„Die Bildungs- und Kunstideale als Varietéprogramm -: das ist unsere Art von «Candide» gegen die Zeit.“
“The ideals of culture and of art as a program for a variety show — that is our kind of Candide against the times.”
— Dada cofounder Hugo Ball, Die Flucht aus der Zeit, 1927
(Flight Out of Time)
Curiouser & curiouser
The Late Now is the variety-talk show for the sharp and the inquisitive. Hosted with eccentric wit and good cheer by Portland polyartist-performer Leo Daedalus with his cohost Alex Reagan, the show goes down live in Portland & Seattle, and is extending virtual tentacles.
Maddened by the inanity of pop culture but fascinated by its sheer protean relentlessness, The Late Now proposes a parallel universe where Dada won the war: a Land of Cockaigne where Marcel Duchamp hosts The Tonight Show and the commercial mainstream has the whip-smart vitality of experimental & avant-garde culture.
Impossible, you say?
It’ll take more than that to stop your host Leo Daedalus and his guests — performers and interviewees alike — from inflaming your ravening intellectual-sybaritic curiosity. A quixotic jester in the court of commercial spectacle, Daedalus co-opts late-night TV structures in service of the richly fascinating, the sharply ludicrous, and the rigorously uncategorizable in an off-center universe of arts, music, culture & ideas.
We call it inclusive ludic subversion. The kids in PR call it “The most fun you’ll ever have with your brain on max.” They get paid by the hyperbole, but they’re onto something, because, hey: Intellectuals just want to have fun. Discuss.
The Late Now's polyartist impresario, Leo Daedalus is a Portland, Oregon-based performer, filmmaker, writer, improviser, comedian, musician, polyglot, and the thinking mammal's talk show host. He is proud to have been called an attempter of fool's errands. It's a ridiculous job, but someone has to do it.
(Unpaid) Acclaim for The Late Now:
“Leo Daedalus gracefully rides the line between genius and crazy.”
— Don Kern, ScratchPDX
“For all it surveys, I think The Late Now is the most interesting thing in Portland's avant evening.”
— James Yeary, Portland
“The LATE NOW was a BIG WOW! Thanks to all the performers and volunteers who made the show such a success.”
— Brad Winter, Portland
“They said it couldn't be done but Leo Daedalus proved that it could be even outdone. If you missed this event don't let it happen again. Leo Daedalus is the man to watch out for and The Late Now is the show to watch.”
— Richard Schemmerer, PDX Art
“Last evening, this was one terrific, improbable, great event.... Just plain fresh air to those of us in the audience — often astonished, laughing and loving this public moment.”
— poet Stephen Vincent, San Francisco (see full review)
“Leo is a 240-volt guy in a 120-volt world.”
— TLN audience member (Seattle 2012)
“That [TLN Episode 3] was the perfect entry point into the world of experimental poetry, which I didn't know a lot about before. I was getting all these ideas about how it relates to my contemporary dance/movement practice.”
— Keyon Gaskin, Portland
“Thanks for the awesome vortex of action — what a blast!”
— Pete Remine, Seattle
“That's a fool's errand.” — TLN audience member (Bloomsday 2012)
» More about Leo Daedalus and his errands.
It's impossible to conclusively characterize what we mean about by the kind of culture we oppose here to the "commercial mainstream." Old-fashioned terms like "serious" or "high culture" are to no avail, and this blurb isn't the place to attempt a critique of the commercial "culture" that we're gauntlet-slapping. In truth, The Late Now is itself a full-spectrum exploration (and critique) of a constellation of crucial questions: What matters in culture? What makes our lives most worth living? What can we rise to? Will there be sushi at the after-party?
For now we'll leave you with a "you know what we mean" hand wave, where what we mean counters both the pandering, infantilizing mainstream that is just a delivery vehicle for profit, and the stifling rigidity of exclusionary, careerist pedantry. The Late Now is an experiment in a radically open alternative. And yes, we hear there's righteous sushi at the after-party.