‘Crabquistador: Scavenger of God’: A new performance by Brooklyn’s Jollyship the Whiz-Bang

Playwright Nick Jones and composer Raja Azar, the new wunderkinds of performance art/puppetry/opera, bring their eight-member ensemble, Jollyship the Whiz-Bang, to the Center for the Arts (CFA) at the College of Staten Island (CSI) on Friday, April 20, 2007 at 8:00pm in the performance of “Crabquistador: Scavenger of God.” Hilarious and edgy, “Crabquistador” tells the tale of a land-bound, late-in-life pirate who, in seeking comfort in Christianity, gets mixed up in a pyramid scheme that rewards money for converts. This performance is for adults 18 years of age and older; tickets are $15. Contact: 718-982-ARTS (2787), boxoffice@cfashows.com, or www.cfashows.com.

Jollyship the Whiz-Bang got its start at Bard College where Jones and Azar did their undergraduate work. In 2002, Jollyship anchored in Brooklyn with Jones and Azar committed to developing anything from concert material to full-length multimedia productions. The troupe was recently at the Time-Based Art Festival at the Portland Institute of Contemporary Art along with Laurie Anderson. “Crabquistador: Scavenger of God” is a sequel to “Sleepless Fishes,” the puppet-pirate-rock-opera that takes place aboard ship. “Crabquistador” features such characters as Captain Clamp, Mr. Skeevy, and the crab, Jumping Jack McMillan. Jollyship brilliantly juxtaposes a five-piece rock band, sword-fighting puppets, PowerPoint presentations, video-projected backgrounds, fire and brimstone, and eight original songs including ”Converting to Christianity” and ”Missionary Style.”

Nick Jones (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, and puppets) will be joined on stage with Jollyship the Whiz-Bang crew of Keith Fredrickson (lead guitar), Dan Kutcher (bass), Mr. Skeevy (keyboards, accordion, and puppets), Kevin Raczka (drums), Devon Ludlow, Katie McClenahan (vocals and lead puppets), and Kris Anton (video design and tech support).

Last March, Nick Jones led a master class for CSI theater students as part of Professor Wickstrom’s Performance I course. Afterward, he participated in a CFA Meet the Artist event in the atrium.

The CSI Center for the Arts is supported in part by the Richmond County Savings Foundation, a gift by the Carnegie Corporation (made possible by an anonymous donor), Con Edison, New York State (through the efforts of the Staten Island Delegation to the State Legislature), New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, Northfield Savings Bank, the Nicotra Group, the SI Bank & Trust Foundation, Time Warner Cable, and by our many business and individual patrons.

Jollyship the Whiz-Bang is the 15th event of the Center for the Arts’ 2006-2007 season. Located at 2800 Victory Boulevard in Staten Island, the CFA is easily reached by car from the Victory Boulevard exit of I-278, the Staten Island Expressway. For information and ticket reservations, contact: 718-982-ARTS (2787), boxoffice@cfashows.com, or www.cfashows.com.

CFA 2006-2007 Season continues with:

Sunday, April 29 at 3:00pm – Sundog Theatre’s Charlotte’s Web (A Family Series Event)

Saturday, May 5 at 8:00pm – Moments to Remember: The Four Lads, The Four Aces, and The Inkspots

Saturday, May 12 at 8:00pm – Alex Torres y Su Orquestra

Saturday, May 19 at 8:00pm – The Laughter Arts Festival, featuring Dom Irrera and Bobby Collins

CSI Center for the Arts: 718-982-ARTS or www.cfashows.com.