Madagascar Inst.

I had the rare treat of witnessing another Madagascar Institute extravaganza, yesterday afternoon.

They’re hard to describe, but they’re basically like underground ‘zine publishing except instead of appropriating the office copiers they appropriate the street and, in some ways, reality itself.

This one was called “The Madagascar Institute goes crazy, Broadway Style!” and featured what must have been 50 performers dressed as cops, garbage pails, bag ladies, etc., in a giant production number to “Summer in the City.” The sound system was discreetly hidden in shopping carts, and we were all escorted to the location by an Institute rep dressed as a tour guide. This was a clever way of getting us to the rendevous, and fooled the cops into thinking the entire crowd really was a tour group instead of, um, illegal public spectacle spectators.

I love these guerilla street events – reminds us all of why they call it “public space.” The amazing thing to me is not how much courage they have to continually pull these spectacles off – but that it requires courage and chutzpah to do such things these days.

Here’s the tour guide leading the crowd. I’m sure someone will post better images or videos of the actual event – please post any links you find in the comments area.