After a three-month renovation, Joe's Pub reopens this evening on Lafayette Street. In an op-ed for WNET's MetroFocus, Joe's Pub director Shanta Thake writes about the struggles to reflect the constantly changing East Village community in her programming. As she writes, "Today, the East Village more likely brings to mind three things: college students, Starbucks and soaring rent costs."
Uh, here's more:
The mission at Joe’s Pub is to reflect the community surrounding it on our stage, which, in practice, always meant a programming vision that is incredibly diverse in terms of genre. But as we at Joe’s Pub prepare for our rebirth into the East Village arts scene Oct. 4, we are forced to ask ourselves: does that actually reflect the community surrounding us anymore? Or are we serving a mythical audience that we ourselves conjure up out of the steam from our own lattes to look like the East Village of yesteryear? The answer to that is less simple.
Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal has more on the changes. "Attendees should be pleased not only by the music, but by renovations that seem to eliminate the venue's shortcomings." Like! The bar is smaller and it has been moved to a corner, which does away with "the clattering glasses and chattering drinkers."