Typically, if you’re at a high school dance and a teacher
gives you his phone number, that’s kind of bad news. But if you’re in your
twenties and the teacher is a legit NYU professor, you’re probably doing OK.
On Monday, Nov. 8, 13P hosted 13P is Falling For You, a Fall
Formal-themed fundraiser to support the theater collective’s last three plays.
Founded in 2003, 13P’s mission is to produce 13 plays
by 13 different playwrights. That’s it. When the remaining plays are
finished, the organization will voluntarily disband, as originally planned.
Every year, the collective throws a party to support its
cause, and this year, the unspoken (but heavily implied theme) was awkward ’80s
For the authentic fall formal experience, I began the evening with dinner
across the street, at a pizza place that handed out cafeteria style trays and
blasted "Party Like It’s 1999" on the radio.
Inside 3LD Art & Technology Center, where the event was held, there was more
(and louder) Prince to be heard. A massive, animated image of the words
"13P is Falling for You," was projected onto the face of the building
across the street (with technology apparently on loan from Conde Nast).
The prom-style fundraiser came complete with a Vice
Principal played by Murray Hill, a fake guidance counselor and even a
homecoming drag-queen. The hosts ran a raffle and auction, with high-profile
prizes like The Daily Show and Colbert Report tickets, and a VIP tour of the set
of Boardwalk Empire.
"Our style is shitty-funny, so that’s why we planned it like this. And
many of our 13 playwrights had their proms in the 80s,” said Event Producer
If shitty-funny was the goal, this Fall Formal was done right: The alcohol in
the punch wasn’t apparent until the dizziness started to kick in, but there
were enough streamers and balloons to cushion the blow should anyone need to
pass out. Theater-types in sparkly jackets and puffy-shouldered dresses danced
flamboyantly to the sounds of everything from Willow Smith to Stevie Nicks, and
by the end of the evening, even some of the more conservative-looking
middle-aged donors were getting their groove on to Peaches’ "Fuck The Pain