dir. July, Sat. Oct 28, Hollywood Theatre

Getting Real with Miranda July

If you like Miranda July, then you already know that she's one of the smartest, most talented (and adorable!) multi-media performing artists in America, and maybe the world. Teen Mercury had the chance to sit down with her over bagels (which, Miranda claimed, smelled like vagina), and talk about her new traveling rehearsal, The Swan Tool, which is both a film and live performance happening at the same time--a multi-media, interactive moving picture. Zac Love performs a live score, and it's showing with the equally cool Astria Suparak's big Joanie 4 Jackie Co-Star Tape #3, Some Kind of Loving!

How does the movie/live performance work?

I'm standing in front of a screen and then there is a screen in front of me, so I'm kind of wedged in between. It's like a split screen. You actually never see my legs; you don't see anything from the waist down.

Who is your character in The Swan Tool?

Her name is Lisa. I have two jobs. I have a job in an office, and I'm a car door unlocker, so when people lock their keys in the car I come unlock them. This is a job that I had. In a very simple way, it's about above and below and about this woman who can't decide whether to live or die so she buries herself in the backyard and then goes on and tries to live her life.

Is there anyone you have a crush on?

Well, he's really cute and he's an artist; we have a lot of fun!

How long have you been working on The Swan Tool?

I started writing it last year. When we do it here in Portland, Zac and I will only have had three rehearsals but he's been working on the music and I've been bringing him video stuff and we have these meetings where I explain the feeling and he translates it.

Wow! Isn't that scary?

You always hear bands say, "We just wrote this yesterday," and then they play it and it's exciting to be the first people who are seeing this and yeah, it totally doesn't work, but we can see what's going to be great about it. That's part of the tradition I come out of. You know, like, "This only happened here tonight; tomorrow night, it'll be that much better, so there's something special about tonight."

Do you have a most embarrassing moment?

Yes. When I got caught shoplifting and peed at the same time. I was so freaked out that I wet my pants, but I was wearing a dress so it was really obvious that I was peeing, but I had no control over my bladder. I just stood there with them holding my wrists and peed all over the floor and they’re just staring at it splattering. And then they arrested me.

Want to know more? Try www.joanie4jackie.com!