This weeks REsaca Report took us to the brand new BRIC house building in Fort Greene. Set on Fulton Street, the stark white, slightly vulgar Grecian columns were hard to miss, as well as the live sounds of cumbia filtering through the glass doors. Having opened less than two weeks ago, BRIC House is the new home for BRIC Arts Media, a non-profit organization behind ‘Celebrate Brooklyn! Performing Arts Festival, who put the new space to good use with their first edition of ‘House Party: Brooklyn is the World’–making it an all out dancefest.
Set in the ‘Ballroom’ (a two level black-box theater), first up was Gregorio Uribe Big Band, a 16-piece uber-talented group of musicians all shades and sizes, playing traditional Colombian cumbia– big band style. Have you ever seen someone rock out on an accordion? Frontman Gregorio dipped and dived, shimmied and shook across the stage, at times even hopping down into the audience to take young ladies for a trip around the dance floor. By the time trumpet and saxophone solos came around, the crowd was sufficiently warmed up, showing off their best two step.
When I needed a break from all the bodies, Armchair Parade, the first project developed in BRIC’s new commissioning and residency program, BRIC House Fireworks was in the back room for curious minds to enjoy. A whimsical, wacky, slightly creepy ‘Brooklyn living room’ populated by mismatched characters watching TV, Armchair Parade gave us a glimpse into what puppets and marionettes do after a long day of entertaining.
Crusty Grad students, middle-aged couples, late-twenty singletons, FOB Colombian’s pouring aguardiente into willing mouths (mine included) were among those left ready to heat things up with the Que Bajo?! DJ’s Uproot Andy and Geko Jones who took over the second half of the evening.
By 11PM I was liquored up (thanks to my whiskey flask, and NOT the $9 cups of sparkling white wine…) had broken a sweat and was ready to head to Remezcla Editor Andrea Gompf’s Birthday Extravaganza on LES to the aptly named Speakeasy. Sitting not-so-pretty next to a deli, Speakeasy is easy to passover. A black colt door leading to a long set of stairs and a doorbell welcomed us into a dingy, red lit bar with a pool table and ‘secret room’ on the side, and plenty of space to dance to salsa, reggae, dembow and when things got really turnt, disco (cue the strobe lights!).
Resaca Rating: 3.5 out 5. BRIC’s House Party served as a perfect pre-party to the rest of my evening. I got to watch live music, chill with some puppets and celebrate Brooklyn’s diversity before getting drunk enough to lose my friends. As most of my coworkers stayed out late enough to watch the sunrise, I headed home with sore legs and the satisfaction of keeping it classy.