We had the good fortune of connecting with Kym Priess and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kym, how do you think about risk?
Risk is how I live my life and therefore my art. Always has. My latest project , STUNTDRIVER, is an extremely theatrical, performance arty rock project. I’ve moved around alot, too. Moved to NYC straight from high school outside of Austin, Texas to attend NYU without ever having been to the city. Later, I lived in Hawaii, Amsterdam, San Francisco and now Los Angeles. I love to challenge myself and even scare myself a little – like asking myself, ” can I really pull this off?” When STUNTDRIVER launched, I made it into this huge immersive, multi-media production. Had never done that in my life but I did it and it sold out and I paid everyone from my own pocket !
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Well, I’m extremely interested in blurring the lines between performance art and rock’n roll. I realize as a kid growing up in Texas the way I “played” was by offering other kids “experiences” in the form of tours of my backyard which I divided into separate made-up ‘lands.” And this very much continues on in my art today – my main project STUNTDRIVER is a hybrid of Pee wee’s playhouse, Wizard of oz, Star Wars & Rocky Horror – all theatrical manifestos that highly influenced me as a kid. So you can guess that I’m a fan of brash humor, absurdity and stark visuals.
The only way I’ve gotten anywhere in life is by not giving up. And even when I don’t know the HOW to do something, to just continuing on with action steps is the only way.
The lessons that have been most invaluable are the following : Patience / Planning ahead and trust your choices , no matter the outcome.
I would love the world to know that I’m making art that challenges/asks us to accept our flaws as humans in an absurd and whimsical manner via electroclash rock with a highly performance art edge.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Well, we would start with a bike ride to Frog Town on the bike path, grab a beer at Frogtown Brewery then dinner at Salazar, maybe even a show at Zebulon.
And OF COURSE, would take them to a Joshua Tree outing – stay at friend’s Airbnb trailer with BLM land as backyard to explore. Pappy and Harriet’s for dinner,maybe The Integratron for a sound bath and some just cruising thru desert roads 😉
A drive up the coast would be lovely as well , time permitting. Hearst Castle, Madonna Inn, Big Sur to camp if possible!
So much to do ….!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
1) My Dad!!! He’s an adventurer, a fighter, an outdoors man, a former Bronco rider and has always pushed me to do what I love without a doubt. And he’s having the hardest time of his life right now with his health – but his resilience is definitely showing up!!! Send him some vibes plse 😉
2) My mom is a firecracker as well and taught me perseverance, strength and using my voice.
3) All the teachers from my formative years at NYU’s Experimental Theatre Wing really shaped me as an artist and shifted my perspective on vulnerability!
4) Anton Söder & John Avila – my bandmates, producers and pals. They have been a major part of STDR and I look forward to more with them!~
5) My partner, Jimmy Lucido, who is the most patient, funny and rock of a person I know. He inspires me everyday
M. Castro Melissa Ramirez Priscilla C. Scott Daniel Sliwa