“Artists Without Walls allows the various artists to bring things they “make” to The Cell, to share with others.  Sharing my neon animations, MANAHATTA and THE ATOMIC ADVENTURES OF JACK KEROUAC last night was a real honor.  To have been able to offer the crowd a touch of fun and joy is the icing on the cake for an artist.” Jack Feldstein, animator and scriptwriter. 


Larry Fleischman and Lorin Partalis

Larry Fleischman and Lorin Partalis

Jack Feldstein’s words echo the sentiment of Tuesday night’s performers who clearly were feeding off the energy  of the audience as well as their fellow artists.  Lorin Partalis and Larry Fleischman moved the jam-packed Cell Theatre with a poignant performance of a scene from A Cancelled Note, a new play by John Moran. John’s play, directed by Tess Howsam, transported the audience into the bittersweet world of a father and his grown daughter who find themselves at odds to the breaking point. Will they part forever?  John is currently shopping the full play with a production goal of March 2015. We’ll keep you posted on all future developments.



Alessia Sushko and Sedly Bloomfeld

Alessia Sushko and Sedly Bloomfeld

Desdemona’s death scene in Othello always comes with a high degree of difficulty and expectation. In the hands of Alessia Sushko and Sedly Bloomfield the audience was witness to a beautiful, passionate and moving scene. Love and fear was on display. Ms. Sushko’s beauty and Mr. Bloomfields’s presence left us wondering, “What would have happened if Desdemona had lived…?”


Serena Jost

Serena Jost

Singer Serena Jost captivated the AWoW audience with two of her new songs, “Silver Star” and “Bloom.” Accompanying herself on cello and guitar, the subtle poetry of her lyrics was highlighted by her beautiful, haunting voice. A transportive experience by a unique and delightful artist.



Vinnie Nauheimer

Vinnie Nauheimer

Vinnie Nauheimer  held the audience rapt as he read two poems about current events. The first, “Nigerian Girls Up in Smoke,” addresses the kidnapped and still missing girls from Nigeria, an event the world has chosen to ignore. The second, “Invisible Victims of Tuam,” deals with the missing remains of eight hundred children in the little town of Tuam, Ireland and the horrors of the Catholic run Mother-Baby homes. Vinnie’s poem suggest the notion that apathy can be the progenitor of evil. Vinnie hopes to include both of these poems in a book of poetry called Remembering the Children


Jack O'Connell, Maura Knowles and Luis Villabon

Jack O’Connell, Maura Knowles and Luis Villabon

Maura Knowles’ new play Insult to Injury, which examines why we should never give up on angels or anyone with broken wings, was given a wonderful reading by Maura, actor Jack O’Connell and composer Nathania Wibowo. Maura, accompanied by Sean Chandra Irawan on piano, also provided the vocals to which one of the audience later said, “Such beautiful work, her singing soars through such glorious tones….She made the room sing!  And such wonderful collaborators.”


Joseph Goodrich and Honor Molloy

Joseph Goodrich and Honor Molloy

Pat Schneider and Joe Goodrich joined Honor Molloy for a reading from Prisoner’s Cinema, the book to an opera about three long-term inpatients and their psychiatrist. The scene is a darkly layered view into the backstories for the doctor and Natalia, who is actively suicidal. Joe’s portrayal of a psychiatrist was spot on and Honor, well anything Honor puts her voice to is spellbinding. 



Steve Silver's "The Watchtower with D.J. Sharp

Steve Silver’s “The Watchtower with D.J. Sharp

Steve Silver showed a clip from his feature film The Watchtower, a story of love and survival in notorious Hell’s kitchen, one man’s plight to get out of the gangster life and return to his birth land of Ireland. The audience was captivated by Silver’s sharp humorous dialogue which soon changed to a shocking execution scene of Harvey Steinberg (played by D.J. Sharp), a big time mob tied loan shark. Great ending, which left the audience in breathless silence. 


Jack Feldstein

Jack Feldstein

Jack Feldstein closed out the evening with two fascinating neon animations, MANAHATTA, from the poem of the same name by Walt Whitman, and THE ATOMIC ADVENTURES OF JACK KEROUAC.  If you’d like to contact Jack for collaborations or simply to keep in touch, Jack asks that you feel free to find him through his website


And we would be remiss if we didn’t acknowledge the contributions that Noel Kilkenny, Consul General of Ireland and Hanora O’Dea Kilkenny made to New York’s Irish American community. They will now move on to their next assignment in Athens, Greece. Athens’ gain is our great loss.


Connie Roberts, Hanora O'Dea Kilkenny

Connie Roberts, Hanora O’Dea Kilkenny

Noel and Hanora’s efforts on behalf of business, tourism and promotion of the arts were tireless and they were gracious hosts to countless events during their four years in New York City. Additionally, Hanora was an enormous supporter of Artists Without Walls, referring many artists and constantly singing the group’s praises. During the evening Hanora was presented an award for her generous commitment of time and support of Artists Without Walls and the New York City multi-cultural arts community. She and Noel will be greatly missed.


The next Artists Without Walls’ Showcase is on August 26th, at the Cell Theatre.  For more information about AWoW write to:


All photos by Vera Hoar


Vera Hoar’s photos from Artists Without Walls’ Showcase at The Cell Theatre, July 22, 2014. The names of those photographed appear above each photo.


“Thank you, Vera! The visual poet of AWOW!” Playwright Joseph Goodrich


David Sharp in Steven Silver’s movie, “The Watchtower.”



Jack O’Connell, Maura Knowles and Luis Villabon


Serena Jost


Alessia Sushko and Sedly Bloomfeld


Vince Nauheimer


Connie Roberts, Hanora Kilkenny and Niamh Hyland


Jack Feldstein and Brendan Connellan


Alessia Sushko


John Moran, Lorin Partalis and Larry Fleischman


Steve Silver and David Sharp


Joseph Goodrich and Honor Molloy







SONG: ASHOKAN FAREWELL, written by JAY UNGAR, and performed by Doc and the Lady. I urge you to read and listen simultaneously.  You can listen by clicking on the link at the bottom of the page.  




Someone who loved order must have spared the twin maples twenty paces in front of the old, clapboard farmhouse. They lent a symmetry otherwise lacking and graciously shaded the lawn. The bank dropped sharply to a dirt road and a swampy pasture where weeping willows concealed the Dead River but not the fields rising beyond. All this, common birds and butterflies, a rusty cultivator, and whatever else was carelessly left, formed my Grandma’s view from the long, weathered porch where she worked on summer days. “How can a river be dead?” I wondered.


img_1356It was all tangles of green and, like they say in wordy books, “dazzling sunny patches interwoven with deep shades.” The atmosphere was languid, though alive with peepers. High winds and high tensions passed over the tops of surrounding hills.


She sat rather still, did Ellen Marie Kilaren Deeny. (Right, age 16) Tired, I guess, with 77 years behind her by 1951. A hungry child in Dublin, at thirteen she’d crossed the Atlantic where she said, “many brave hearts are asleep in the deep.” Here in New Jersey, she became a dairy farmer’s wife. I later learned of 13 pregnancies in 20 years, two miscarriages, three dead in their first year, seven raised, one dead at 37 from a heart infection. Now, her oldest daughter, also Ellen Marie, my mother, (Below with author) who moved back home after college to help her parents, was ill and (no one dared to think) dying from the same disease.


mommy-and-marty-2-2Grandpa was dead. The only person he could stand was my father, and vice versa. Daddy was good with him, gave him a shave every morning. His father had died some 20 years prior and I guess he thought a crazy old man was better than none. Old Hughie wasn’t suited to his fate. A skilled cabinetmaker, he remembered dancers and teachers among the Deeny’s in Donegal. He was a pretty good farmer anyway, but not good enough against the Farm Depression of the late 20’s and 30’s. Nevertheless, he sent his brilliant children to college, Radcliffe and such.


But somehow, Grandma Deeny accepted all things in life. She loved her children, did what she could, and left the rest to Providence. Daddy said she was the only good Catholic he knew (he loved to exaggerate) and drove her to Mass every Sunday. I watched her, comfortably stooped in a straight chair, wearing an old cotton dress, shelling peas. The soft wind just lifted her wisps of hair. She split the pods, gave me that melancholy smile, and said nothing. I said nothing, too. A child respects a reverie sometimes, I’ve discovered.

farm-in-winter-4Swiped peas are the sweetest, warm as the day as they rolled off her thumb and dropped in the kettle ather feet. I don’t think she minded, though they were to be cooked for supper and many people were entitled. They were mine after all. My mother and father had planted and picked them and so on, and on and on spun my simple universe.


What was she thinking? Did I remind her of herself as a girl of three and make her long for her most green home? Did she wonder where the hungry tow-headed elf with her eyes would find her strength in adversity? Was she recalling her life in the light of the Immortality of the Soul and the Forgiveness of Sins? I don’t know. She was lost to me in the secret ecstasy of woman’s work so rhythmic and expert the mind is free to exult or pine, the eye to be caught by a butterfly. And she stays with me that way.


Still I strain to hear her voice, to find her words. “I’m sorry, Miss, it’s impossible. No records were kept.”



“But I want to know and there’s nowhere else to look.”



“Well, that’s not very good, is it?” says the complacent bureaucrat with finality. Furious, I walk away, but soon silently singing of Ellen Marie.



–Martha Pinson, summer 1982, edited 2011

New York City


Click here for more about the very talented Martha Pinson.



Alessia Sushko

Alessia Sushko

Why attend Tuesday’s Artists Without Walls’ Showcase at the Cell Theatre? Here’s what singer/songwriter Jenai Huff said about a recent Showcase:  “What an extraordinary night. I feel blessed to have been a witness and a participant to the magic.” Jenai Huff


Here’s the cast of performers:


Russian born actress and model Alessia Sushko and screen and TV actor Sedly Bloomfeld will be performing the death scene from Othello. “I am thrilled to be performing at AWoW again,” Alessia said. “Being able to expand my craft and exercise my performance muscles with the beauty and the complexity of Shakespeare’s language is a gift.”



Jack Feldstein

Jack Feldstein

Jack Feldstein will be presenting his neon animation films, Manhatta (by Walt Whitman and The Atomic Adventures of Jack Kerouac. Originally from Sydney, Australia and now based in NYC, Jack Feldstein is an award-winning scriptwriter and neon animation filmmaker. His scripts “A House Like Any Other” and “Three Months with Pook” have won prizes in Australia and Britain. His neon animations have been screened and won awards worldwide from Lincoln Center in NYC to Rotterdam, The Netherlands. His philosophy is “search for an interesting life.”



Maura Knowles

Maura Knowles


Actress/playwright Maura Knowles will be presenting a scene from her new play Insult to Injury, which examines why we should never give up on angels or anyone with broken wings. The piece is inspired by actual events drawn from Maura’s life. Nathania Wibowo is her composer.





Vincent Nauheimer

Vincent Nauheimer


Vinnie Nauheimer, a long time advocate for children and a voice against abuse, will be reading two poems that deal with current events related to the abuse of children. The first poem concerns the three hundred abducted Nigerian girls and the second deals with the events recently disclosed about an unwed mother home in Tuam, Ireland. Though thousands of miles and years apart, the stories are very much connected through the apathy shown to the plight of these children.




Serena Jost

Serena Jost

Serena Jost is a Swiss-American singer/songwriter/cellist whose music invokes vivid emotional landscapes. Serena’s new album, A Bird Will Sing, was exquisitely produced by the legendary Anton Fier (Golden Palominos) and was named one of the Top 50 Albums of 2013 by New York Music Daily. Serena can be seen at some of NYC’s top venues including Brooklyn’s Barbès and Joe’s Pub, and tonight performs both songs from the album and new material.




Honor Molloy

Honor Molloy

Rounding out the lineup will be long time AWoW fav Honor Molloy, who will present a segment from Prisoner’s Cinema–the book for a new music-theatre work about three patients held in a long-term psychiatric facility who believe they are Christ and their psychiatrist; John Moran, whose scene from his play “A Cancelled Note,” a story of mystery and forgiving will be directed by Tess Howsam and stars Lorin Partalis and Larry Fleishman, and Steven Silver’s film “The Watchtower” a film about the Westies of Hell’s Kitchen. which stars Steve and AWoW member David Sharp.



Tuesday’s Showcase at The Cell Theatre, 338 W23rd St, NYC begins at 7pm. We hope to see you there.  This is a free event. 










10555443_10202898826204530_1096071086_oArtists Without Walls presents its “Showcase at The Cell Theatre” on Tuesday, July 22nd, 7pm, 338 W23rd St. Join NYC’s most welcoming art group for a great lineup of entertainment and conviviality. There is no charge. 




Tara O'GradyTara O’Grady and her trio will be performing at the IBO Summer Party, Thursday, July 24, 2014, 7pm, at The Manhattan Club: 800 Seventh Ave., New York, NY. (212) 582-2975.  Join Tara for a special evening featuring great music, a full buffet dinner and an open bar. There will also be two very special guests: Mr. Noel Kilkenny, Irish Consul General and Mr. Peter Ryan, Irish Deputy Consul General. Both men are leaving New York this year to move on to diplomatic appointments in Greece and Hong Kong, respectively.  They have been great friends to the IBO, so this is a perfect opportunity for IBO members to personally wish them well on their new appointments.


Members & non-members alike are welcome. IBO Members will receive the discounted price of $40 per person. Non-member are welcome at $50 per person. Price includes 2 hour open bar (7-9pm), live music and a deluxe buffet. Tickets & information available on the IBO website.  



unnamed-6Honor Finnegan will be performing in the Schoolhouse Songwriter Series at the Old Franklin Schoolhouse Saturday, July 26at 7:30pm – 10:00pm, 491 Middlesex Ave, Metuchen, New Jersey. Tickets $10

Featuring Honor, Rich Deans, Shayfer James. Hosted by Sharon Goldman Sponsored by the Metuchen Arts Council




GetImage.ashxAnd down the road…Antoinette Montague has a busy August  and September schedule. Here it is: 

August 6, 2014 Guest of Winard Harper Grants Tomb, Jazzmobile

August 10, 2014 10 am-12 noon Bethany Baptist Church
275 W Market St. Newark NJ

August 15, 2014 7 pm Hudson Valley Jazz Fest guest of Chris Persad August 16, 2014 Morristown Jazz Fest. Winard Harper, feat Antoinette

September 3, 2014 12 noon -1 pm WBGO Jazz Series
at the Hilton Gateway 2, Newark, NJ

September 26, 2014 Jazz at Kitano
66 Park Av. at 38th St., NYC

Booking: 203-820-8819 Booking Gwen Evans 973-763-2143


Why are the Artists Without Walls’ Showcases so popular? Take a look at what members and performers have to say:


“It was a thrilling, life affirming night—life-affirming in the sense that an Artist Without Walls’ showcase highlights beautifully, often spectacularly, our shared humanity.”  Connie Roberts, poet.


“If you were to put Ed Sullivan, Oscar Wilde and TEDTalks into a blender you’d get Artist Without Walls.” Ed Romanoff, singer/songwriter.


“What was needed so desperately is what AWOW has given us, a loving ear to witness….That room, that audience of art friends, people that really understand and want to see you express it. Wonderful!” Mary Tierney, actress


“Brilliant! Somehow egos are left at the door and you sit there absorbing these wonderful performances. And by the end of the evening you find yourself connected to your soul.” Ray Lindie, playwright.


We have a great night lined up on Tuesday, July 22nd, 7pm at The Cell Theatre. Performers include: Top Row: Maura Knowles, Alessia Sushko, Charles R. Hale. Bottom row: Vinnie Nauheimer, Jack Feldstein, Sedly Bloomsfeld, Steve Silver and John Moran. 




Photo montage by Vera Hoar. 



Jack O'Connell

Jack O’Connell






Who’s the doorman in the Jordan/Derek Jeter “Re2pect” commercial?  None other than friend and Artists Without Walls’ member Jack O’Connell.










By Charles R. Hale


History is replete with stories of the wealthy, but the stories of the poor and dispossessed are rarely recorded.  The Keatings (my maternal grandmother’s grandparents) were poor Irish immigrants and finding material concerning their lives in newspapers or books was improbable.  I discovered, however, if the news wasn’t good, it was possible.


Pierce Keating Sr's Death

Pierce Keating Sr’s Death

The Keatings, mid-nineteenth century Irish immigrants, including Pierce Sr, his wife, Ella, their son, Pierce Jr, and several siblings, lived at 41 Raymond Street, Brooklyn in a neighborhood that was called Irish Town, now referred to as Fort Greene. The neighborhood was populated by poor Irish immigrants who lived in over-crowded, wood framed houses that were, more often than not, firetraps. My family experienced the consequences of these living conditions when Pierce Sr., my great great grandfather, died in a house fire on August 31, 1884. 


Crime was a common occurrence on the street and Pierce Jr was no stranger to trouble. I learned from articles in the Brooklyn Eagle, Brooklyn’s leading daily until it suspended publication in 1955, that Pierce was arrested twice for crimes committed on Raymond Street. He was arrested once on morals charge and once for assaulting his sister with a frying pan. He served time in the Raymond Street Prison, located one block from the family home. 


The neighborhood was wretched. Public drunkeness was a normal occurrence.  On the morning of November 8, 1886, James O’Brien, one of the Keatings’ neighbors living at 44 Raymond Street, while drunk on the street and right in front of the prison, amused himself by firing off a revolver.  He was promptly arrested, but soon escaped. He was re-arrested a day later and sent back to the Raymond Street Prison where he spent ten days for drunkeness and another ten days for firing the pistol. 


Pierce Keating Jr. Caged Again

Pierce Keating Jr. Caged Again

I thought I’d learned all I could of Pierce’s life until earlier this week when I conducted an online search. Might there be a new lead? And to my surprise there was. I found Pierce’s name in a story “Gangs of Brooklyn,” from the blog of Eamon Loingsigh, Artists Without Walls’ member and author of the recently published book Light of the Diddicoy.


It seems Pierce was a member of the “Myrtle Avenue Gang,” a group dedicated to crime and debauchery.  Here’s what Eamon wrote:


Myrtle Avenue Gang – (1872-1885) Known as simple hooligans who were charged with assaulting many police officers and drunken rowdyism. In 1883 one member interrupted a Civil War Veterans picnic at the old High Ground Park (no longer exists) at the corner of Myrtle and Throop. He was “put out” three times, the third time he punched the officer who clubbed and arrested him. The gang assaulted another police officer also that year by throwing paving stones and fighting him while “working the growler” and getting themselves drunk and loud by singing old songs. At one point the gang split in two, the “Dusters” supported by the much bigger Jackson Hollow Gang, and the “Barkers,” who clashed at a saloon at 254 Myrtle Avenue.
Neighborhoods they roamed: Bedford-Stuyvesant, Bushwick,
Some of the gang members were: Joe Grapes, Paddy Burns, Scabby McCloskey, Patrick Lally, PIERCE KEATING, Maggie McGrath, Dan Callahan, John McCann, John March.


Pierce Keating Jr. Arrested on Morals Charges

Pierce Keating Jr. Arrested on Morals Charge 

Pierce, Jr. lived a short life. He died at the age of 26, in 1888.  His cause of death is listed as mitral insufficiency. Exhaustion was a contributing factor. A short and fast life ended in fatigue and exhaustion, a not uncommon fate for a nineteenth century Irish immigrant.


I’ve often wondered what it must be like to live one’s entire life in a small town, surrounded by the same sights and sounds, day after day. Brooklyn was not a small town, however, most immigrant’s lives were not lived wandering through the borough. Their lives played out on the living theatre of each individual street, amongst the poverty, the fires and the crime, the horrors of prison, forever surrounded by the chaos of everyday life.


Eamon Loingsigh's "Light of the Diddicoy."

Eamon Loingsigh’s “Light of the Diddicoy.”

If you would like more information about the gangs of Brooklyn I highly recommend Eamon Loingsigh’s blog,  “Blog for the Auld Irishtown. ” The blog is the home of the Auld Irishtown trilogy, historical novels about Liam Garrity, a 14 year old Irish immigrant, and the White Hand Gang, a gang that called its home the docks and piers along the Brooklyn waterfront during the early part of the 20th Century. The first book in the trilogy is called, Light of the Diddicoy. (Click on the title to see reviews or to purchase.) 


Here is what author Malachy McCourt said about Eamon’s book: Light of the Diddicoy is an amazing series of literary leaps from terra firma into the stratosphere above. The writing embraces you, and his description of the savagery visited on poor people is offset by the humor and love of the traditional Irish community. Yes there is laughter here too and it is a grand read, leaving any reader fully sated. Don’t leave the store without this book.” 



This Saturday night, July 12th, 9-11PM, singer/songwriter and Artists Without Walls’ member Vincent Cross will be appearing with EuroGrass at the Jalopy Theater, 315 Columbia St, Brooklyn. 

Shane Kerwin, Vincent Cross, and Billy Failing

Shane Kerwin, Vincent Cross, and Billy Failing

” I’m very excited to be bringing this one-off show to NYC with the incredible Mala & FyrMoon and my colorful troupe of musicians,” said Vincent. “This may be my only show this year with a full-band line up!”

Check out our short little teaser film below that shows the boys working up a tune.
New York friends can join the Facebook invite, and spread the news!. You can purchase your tickets in advance to guarantee a seat.






Today, from 12 noon-3pm, Deborah Monlux’s Catahoula Cajun Band will be playing at Superfine, a converted warehouse space with open kitchen, live music, bar and restaurant. Located at 126 Front Street, Brooklyn, NY  11201, in  the Dumbo neighborhood between Pearl and Jay Street.


Take the F train to York Street and walk one block to Front.  Make your day complete by walking after brunch to John Street , located between the Adams and Pearl Street waterfront, to see John Street Pasture, an art installation waterfront lot covered with beautiful crimson clover!  For reservations or tables near stage, call 718-243 9005     Directions

Martina Fiserova

Martina Fiserova

Singer/songwriter Martina Fiserova is performing at the Way Station, located at 683 Washington Ave btw Prospect and St. Marks, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, June 30th, Monday, at 11pm. Suggested donation for all shows is $5.  




10409329_819118514772518_1943922312432796407_nDon Creedon’s play, The Lobby will be given a reading on Monday night, June 30th, at 7:00pm.  The New Jersey Repertory Company, 179 Broadway, Long Branch, NJ, is hosting the reading, which is directed by Adam Fitzgerald. Tom O’Keefe heads up a wonderful cast, including veteran Irish actors John Keating, Ciaran Byrne, Michael Mellamphy, Rachel Pickup, Matt Golden, Pepper Binkley, Dee Nelson, Orlagh Cassidy, and last but not least, fellow AWoW member, Honor Finnegan, as special musical guest!


The Lobby is an Irish immigrant story, a modern American comedy, and an old-school farce all wrapped up in one terrific new play. A group of Irish ne’r-do-wells do whatever it takes to get ahead in New York. The result is one big, elaborate and extremely hilarious hoax.