Making a Scene on the Radio

“Do you think about your organs, Timmy?” asked Moriah Evans, an experimental choreographer. “How often do you commit yourself to trying to sense the bodies within your body?”

She was live on air, speaking to the artist and teacher Timothy Simonds on Montez Press Radio, an online station based in Manhattan’s Chinatown. Mr. Simonds hosts a show called “Miss Othmar’s Meeting with Teachers,” a reference to Charlie Brown’s teacher, who is only ever heard as a disembodied voice. Every month, he asks people with wildly varying expertise to educate him on something new.

That winter afternoon, Ms. Evans was instructing him in the art of dancing with his internal organs.

They stood facing each other on opposite ends of the station’s sparse recording studio. “I want you to try to draw with your esophagus,” she said, asking him to picture his esophagus as a tool separate from the rest of the body. The point was to “use the organ to move the container of your throat.”

Ms. Evans began to emit a series of unearthly noises: She retched, growled and unleashed a long, high-pitched shriek. “Shock your body into the vitality that’s already there!” she told Mr. Simonds.

The host joined in, gurgling quietly. Ms. Evans urged him on: “Come on Timmy, a few gags!”

It’s not exactly NPR. Montez Press Radio has carved out an oddball niche in New York City’s creative ecosystem from its perch above a skate shop on Canal Street, across from the popular bar Clandestino. The station has thrived with a defiantly low-stakes approach and penetrating reach into the underground dimensions of the city’s art, literature, nightlife and music scenes.

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