Among my myriad resolutions is to get more involved in my awesome neighborhood of Jersey City. To that end, I did not hesitate when my high school classmate and current kickball teammate, MVPete, invited me along to check out the first open mic night of 2009 sponsored by local artists’ group Art House Productions.
To call them local is an understatement. I met MVPete at the Light Rail when he disembarked, and he proceeded to lead me to the gathering, which was being held a mere three and a half blocks from my apartment. I admit, this felt a little embarrassing. After all, I’ve lived in Jersey City for a year and a half now. How did this escape me?
One unnecessarily long and slow elevator ride later, we were on the top floor the former school building at the edge of Hamilton Park, in a flurry of pre-show activity. In a large room lined with windows, with views of the Empire State Building to the north and the Verranzano Bridge to the south, over thirty people were testing lights, setting up cameras, rehearsing their music, finding a seat, or buying a snack (because art and food are, as we well know, inseparable). The show started around 8:00 and was still going strong when I decided to call it a night at 10:30. Not having attended, much less been a part of, a performance of this nature since college, I left in a really good mood. There was some definite talent on the stage, and it’s great to know that they are all, to varying degrees, my neighbors.
For more on Art House Productions, check their website.