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Marathon of Speeches at the Fitness Center for Arts and Tactics

Speak easy

Brooklyn Daily
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Go to Bushwick to see experimental music, art, and now — pontificating.

A marathon session of speeches will attempt to hold an audience’s attention for the long haul, testing its endurance — and tolerance.

“I am hoping that the audience will get a little rowdy,” said organizer Miles Pflanx. “We are going to run a pool on who will start a riot.”

The idea behind the event, dubbed a Marathon of Speeches, is that it will bring back to what seems to be an ancient idea of the manifesto, of emotive, propaganda-filled discourse that calls listeners to action.

“Ideology is considered so old-hat these days,” said Pflanx. “Everything flows along the standard liberal and conservative lines. There is no more dreaming of a utopia or novelty.”

There are already more than 30 speakers signed up, and Pflanx hopes to get to 45 or 50 by the night of the event. Each speaker will have a five-minute time limit.

The speeches will include highly charged and impassioned talks, political propaganda, and brainy self-referential experiments.

One woman, who plans to marry her platonic best friend and business partner, will deliver an invective on the real meaning behind marriage.

“We are seeing a much more honest depiction of how people interact now,” said Monica Miracle, 25. “Marriage is a medium of expression.”

One speaker, Daniel Creahan, plans to give a speech about speeches themselves, and how the theatricality of speeches, like those given by Adolf Hitler, can rouse listeners to behave in horrific ways that they would not have normally.

To add another level, he plans to deliver the speech utterly dispassionately.

“The speech will break down all the techniques and I’ll be mumbling and shuffling all the way through it,” said Creahan.

If the audience needs to take a break from the heavy-handed pontificating, they can step outside to see words literally floating away as if weightless.

Jordan Johnson will be performing “Letters Take Flight,” in which he loads pre-signed pieces of papers into his Smith-Corona manual typewriter and types until he reaches the end of the page, which is attached to helium balloons, sending it off into the sky.

“The helium balloon is a metaphor for the writing,” said Johnson. “It inflates in the thought process and then it gets exposed to air and it deflates.”

Marathon of Speeches at the Fitness Center for Arts and Tactics (1196 Myrtle Ave. between Willoughby Avenue and Suydam Street in Bushwick). 8 pm, Sept. 3, free.

Reach reporter Danielle Furfaro at or by calling (718) 260-2511. Follow her at
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