Gypsy Rock Opera Viva Patshiva Debuts March 6 at New York’s Interart Theatre


New York (New York), USA – Viva Patshiva means "Long Live The Party" in the Roma language and the party starts on March 6, running every Friday and Saturday through May 16 at the Interart Theatre, 500 West 52nd street (at 10th Avenue). Book and lyrics are by David Jenness ("Born To Warp") and the catchy score is built on melodies from Transylvanian and Hungarian Roma, played by some of New York’s top Gypsy and Balkan musicians.

The featured roles are sung by Chemda, the Israeli-American pop singer and comedienne ("Conjure On," Nettwerk records, "Keith And The") and Ray West, lead singer of the 90’s metal band "Spread Eagle" ("Switchblade Serenade," MCA/Universal). Gypsy choreography is by Andrea Kalan, a Hungarian Gypsy dancer, with additional choreography by Aaron Haskell.

The story concerns a clan of Roma musicians and dancers who have settled in a seedy section of Brooklyn. The man who smuggled them into the United States is demanding payment, and their only hope lies in a romance between a sizzling exotic dancer and a wealthy motivational speaker who is infatuated with her.

The plot hinges on the moody Gypsy dancer who lives at the speed of emotion. When she actually falls for the American, the cross-cultural affair becomes a matter of life and death. Along the way, there are unforgettable love songs, drinking songs, dirty songs, and breakup songs – with clever lyrics, fleet-footed dancing, and comedic riffs on love, marriage and the American Dream.

Directed by Paul Smithyman and presented by the Interart Development Series, which since 1996, has provided an environment of creative freedom for a wide variety of theater artists to develop new works. Among the artists the Interart has presented are: blessed unrest, The Shalimar, The Talking Band, Brett C. Leonard, Stephen Adley Guirgis, Tea Alagic, Wendy Kesselman, Tina Shepard, Timothy Haskell.

The Interart Theatre has been transformed into an underground party hangout. It’s the perfect place for a Patshiva, a unique Gypsy party experience that combines food, drink, music and dance and lasts until there is nothing left. In the true spirit of the Roma patshiva, the ticket price includes unlimited beer and wine.

Prior to the 90 minute show, Gypsy dance instruction is open to anyone who wants to learn and all are encouraged to join the cast in the dances. Following the show, a Roma-style After Party continues the celebration. Doors open at 7:30 with authentic Gypsy dance instruction. The show commences at 8:30.

Tickets are priced at $20 and include all you can drink beer and wine (age 21 and up). They can be purchased in advance at SmartTix – (212 868 4444 or visit and type "Viva" into the search bar). For more information, visit

Recordings available: Reasons To Live by Viva Patshiva

Author: World Music Central News Department

World music news from the editors at World Music Central


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *