Thursday, September 28, 2017

Schulenberg's Page: New York, Part CXXIX

Text and Illustrations by ©Bob Schulenberg

In March, 1968 discotheques were
proliferating and a newer one was Salvation! It had raised platforms for the dancers with railings to keep the dancers from falling into the spectators seated at the ringside tables.

It had a fairly integrated crowd, with a merging of downtown and uptown.
It was also a venue to show off new trendy fashions and the raised platforms helped with that — acting as a kind of couture catwalk.
For men, there was a revival of a kind of clothing with Beau Brummell details.
The new floor shows in Manhattan were now peopled by paying customers! And they had an appreciative audience.
A new rock musical opened way downtown at the Orpheum Theater on 8th Street at Second Avenue, an unlikely location for a musical that would be so successful it would have over 900 performances. The Lower East Side was just beginning to be more than a neighborhood of Russians and hippies so the show's success was a lure for people who would've never gone there.
Your Own Thing was very loosely based on Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, the story of twins separated by shipwreck and landing in Illyria which in this version is portrayed by the 1960s City of New York!
It was so difficult to draw in the dark!
After the show closed at the Orpheum it went on tour with eventual productions in London and Australia!
Going home after the show, at least the IRT Subway was close by!
Ed. note: On Thursday, October 12th Bob will be honored with a show of his drawings at the Patrick Parrish Gallery in Tribeca (

"Bob Schulenberg: The Secret Cinema" will open with a VIP reception from 6-8 PM on that night. The show runs through the 18th as a companion event to a week-long tribute to director Paul Bartel, screening October 13-19 at Anthology Film Archives in the East Village. Now based in Northern California, Bob Schulenberg is flying in to attend the opening reception.
The gallery show, curated by Andrea Salvini, is a captivating visual diary of Schulenberg’s drawings and photographs, narrating the making of Paul Bartel's first success — his underground hit “The Secret Cinema” (1968), which Bob co-produced.

The Collection will include several of Bob's original sketchbooks from the mid-1960s, combined with photographs and prints. The exhibition gives a glimpse into the rough, early days of independent filmmaking in New York, and it forms a moving tribute to Schulenberg's friendship with Bartel, whom he met when they were both undergraduates at UCLA's department of animation in the late 1950s. It was a creative collaboration that lasted the rest of Paul's life (he died in 2000).
Bob and Paul at a photo booth soon after the completion of the film.
Bob will also participate in Q&A discussions at the Bartel series at Anthology after the screenings of “The Secret Cinema” and “Eating Raoul” — the latter of which he served as production designer to memorable effect. “The Secret Cinema” was recently restored by The Film Foundation, founded by Martin Scorsese, with additional funding from the George Lucas Foundation. Check the full screening schedule here.

The organizers of the dual event established a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for the independent initiative and they are grateful for any support. More info here.
Contact Bob here.
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