50 Bats. $10 Tix. 5 Plays. 3 Survivors. 1 Free Beer.

How do you get a bunch of twenty-somethings to go to the theater? With beer of course.

The Bats, The Flea Theatre’s resident company of emerging artists, keeps their audiences coming back for more in their ongoing summer showcase #the SERIALS @ The Flea. For only $10 you get a ticket and a beer. And it’s good beer too. Sitting back in my plastic chair sipping a Six Point Ale, Downstairs at the Flea, I watched as young theater artists and their entourages filled all the remaining seats, and crevices, and floor space in front of the stage. Actors share insider tidbits, foreign exchange students with unpronounceable names shout to be heard over the buzz of voices, iPhones struggle to find signals to update their statuses. We all want to check in here. The energy in the room was absolutely electric.

Escalating bass lines thump as stragglers find their seats. Against the backdrop of blaring indie rock, the Bats take flight, welcoming a sassy young band, Holiday Holiday onto their stage. A high energy song charges the momentum forward. The plays ranged in content and some were clearly more developed than others. One thing is clear, the Bats fearlessly commit 100% to their roles, they move props, do their own stunts, employ low-tech theatrical tricks that still deliver the wow factor. It is pure fun and youthful joy. The Bats rule!

serials@theflea is a raucous late night play competition featuring The Bats and some of NYC’s hottest young playwrights. Live music and free beer help fuel this weekly event, which runs Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. All tickets are only $10.

In #serials@theflea, five teams of Bats perform original ten-minute episodic plays. The audience will vote for its three favorite pieces, which return the next week with a new installment. The teams with the two least popular stories must likewise come back the following week, but with entirely different serialized plays.

Created by Bat company members Dominic Spillane and Stephen Stout, in collaboration with Flea Artistic Director, Jim Simpson, #serials@theflea is directed by Nicole Greene and Mia Walker and The Flea’s resident directors. The production features emerging playwrights and over 50 members of The Bats.

Cycle 3 of #serials@theflea runs June 9-August 20th, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 11pm. Tickets are only available at the door and are cash only.

The Flea is located at 41 White Street between Church and Broadway, three blocks south of Canal, close to the A/C/E, N/R/Q, 6, J/M/Z and 1 subway lines.