Street Walking in Bridgeport

Leave Town & Country for an Evening

Repost with addendum. We have been playing to capacity at TWO BOOTS of BRIDGEPORT. Now, coming, other programs using real life experiences as their core.

MAY 23, 2012

Today is an important day for Mousemuse. We are hitting the streets of Bridgeport's ambitious revival district at Bijou Square. Once upon a time, Manhattanhites winced about attending cutting edge arts events in what was called "alphabet city." Now, they have to lineup for tickets to cutting edge entertainment or theater that doesn't cost $175 a ticket like Broadway, but is just as thought provoking.

Yes, in Westport we've embraced the arts. But the emerging artists have little or no center to simply gather. Restaurants are sprouting again in Westport. Gorgeous women and magazine men. Good hype and vibe at the Spotted Horse late at night. Then where to? A rock band at the Duck? Maybe. A little upstairs music at a couple of places. Jazz Jam at WAC in folding chairs with a plastic glass of wine? No ambience, but sometimes exciting if you could walk there and feel the "club" vibe.

But how about a little culture? Are the art galleries planning to stay open. Is our town Madison Avenue? Is Westport ever going to properly develop a venue with a stage. Town Hall has the auditorium, and a black box theater that's privately run, but budget constraints are real as Westport focuses in on our gem of an educational system.

How did Brooklyn and SoHo and Alphabet City develop into vibrant places? Cheap real estate and someone with vision. Lots of someones. Youth could afford to live there and work there. Later they'd move out to the burbs and wonder why they felt "dead."

We are so insular we've forgotten to look a few (metaphoric) blocks up the road. That's where Bridgeport has, for the past ten years, been quietly putting its future in the hands of artistic visionaries like Phil Kuchma. The Kuchma Corporation has put its money and passion behind the redevelopment of Bijou Square. Kuchma and MouseMuse are meeting on Friday, May 25th. MouseMuse and Kuchma's team are heading into a momentous time. If you stop thinking of Bridgeport as if it is Hell's Kitchen, (and you know that Hell's Kitchen is now unaffordable) you will realize that it's a city much closer to you than New York, some of the best places like Two Boots and the Bijou were recruited by Kuchma to start up a quality arts community. It's an opportunity for our fans to not only dine out with the swells, but an opportunity to get real, and to generate ideas.

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