Art Film Music

Underground Royalty Leah Hennessey Wants to Write a Musical With Her Stepdad

David Johansen in Personality Crisis: One Night Only (film still). Image courtesy of Showtime.

Three years ago, David Johansen fêted his 70th birthday with an intimate cabaret show at the legendary Café Carlyle. The New York Dolls frontman, who has used the pseudonym Buster Poindexter throughout his solo musical career, saucily serenaded friends, family, and Gotham icons with the swinging rock ‘n’ roll songs that cemented him as a cult figure. That performance is at the crux of Personality Crisis: One Night Only, the documentary Martin Scorsese and David Tedeschi dedicated to Johansen. The film, which premieres today on SHOWTIME, also features archival footage of the artist’s irreverent life and candid interviews filmed and directed by Leah Hennessey, Johansen’s stepdaughter. Hennessey is an underground New York creative herself—known for her eponymous band, her comedic web series Zhe Zhe, and collaborations with Celine. To mark the film’s debut, CULTURED called up Hennessey to talk role models, Johansen’s zen-like detachment, and tasting the stardust.

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