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Archikulture Digest

by Carl F Gauze

Archive for September, 2011

Monday, September 26th, 2011

Orlando Improv Festival
September 26, 2011 – Day TWO
Sponsored by the Daily City
Winter Park Playhouse, Winter Park Fl

Dear Aunt Gertrude and Loaded Dice

As I was barreling down I-4 in the torrential rain, my thoughts ranged from the threat of sudden death by texting soccer mom to last night’s Improv shows. The thought that stuck in my mind (besides “will I meet Grandma, and would she still be all wrinkly?”) was there sure are a lot of large men in the Improv World. But tonight “Dear Aunt Gertrude” popped in with a trim, buff, and a half female troupe. They get points for looks, and with a very light early audience they struggled to find laughs. The theme was “baking” I assume) and homey things were there fodder. There multiple vignettes wandered through a baking competition, a “Welcome to the neighborhood” party, and a girl getting booted off the Powder Puff Football team. Nothing really gelled, they kept swinging for a crowd pleasing idea, but suddenly the Magic Flashlight went off in the booth and “Bang.” Show over. Comedy was particularity brutal tonight.

Next up we witness “Loaded Dice” from Kansas City – they blast in to the theatre in Mormon shirts and subtly patterned power ties. After high-fiving everyone they can reach they plug their own Improv festival and introduce their long form “Family Dinner” game. It’s Harry Potter Day, and while there was an amazing amount of blocking, they rolled some slightly off color comedy that started to click. Their big laughs come from little side vignettes – I was impressed with the repurposed gift gag, the puking on the miniature golf course bit, and a reminiscence of meeting J. K. Rowling in her younger vegan days. She proclaims “My farts smell like heaven’s Dumpster!” The evening is starting to look up.

Offsides and Jana Banana from “104.1 The Phillips File” perform “The Armondo”

Jana Banana from one of our many local Clear Channel choices comes out and tells true stories about her life as the troupe of five locavor comics act out a scenes based on her life. This show rocked as the house filled up and the jokes flowed like comedy after the second drink. Maybe the material is better; maybe this troupe had their chop down tighter, and maybe a room full of laughers made this show connect. The comics run a scene until Jana calls time out, she tells more reveling stories about wheelchair basketball and tandem skydiving and interning at a radio station, and even knocks out a paraplegic joke. It’s a nice touch, and this is a classy event – we had our second puke story of the evening.

3033
This festival has finally hit some sort of critical mass – the lobby is crowded, herds of black T-shirted men stand outside smoking and debating what “funny” means, the bar is making money, and some descent rock and roll replaced the Benny Hill soundtrack, and it’s time for another Chicago based group. “3033” does long form, which seems to be the focus of this three day show, and these guys take an audience idea and promptly ignore it. There story wanders around a Top Gun Lone Wolf substitute teacher and I wonder if it’s just a coincidence that the sound booth has the Top Gun Theme cued up. This is another show that had trouble finding a center, but did draw laughs from an audience that was now becoming very familiar. Some of the material works, like the raw chicken shooters and the Brazilian Funyuns gags, but most of it leans toward some rather icky sexual situations. But by now the audience is taking control of the room, and the energy is much better even if the comedy could use some polish. I was hoping to hang out for Bear vs. Wizard, but a sudden home emergency pulled me away. One more day to go…

For more information and tickets, please visit
http://www.OrlandoImprovFestival.com or
http://Twitter.com/OrlandoImprov or
http://Facebook.com/OrlandoImprovFestival

Orlando Improv Festival – Day One

Sunday, September 25th, 2011

Orlando Improv Festival
September 25, 2011 – Day One
Sponsored by the Daily City
Winter Park Playhouse, Winter Park Fl

Hot McCartney and Mad Cowford

It’s the opening act for the second annual Orlando Improv fest, and while it looks like it might rain outside, inside a small group of improv artists infiltrate the audience and generate a ruckus as Hot McCartney launches into long form routine about a starving city obsessed with falafels in particular. Good choice – the word “falafel” is one of the most fun foods to ask for, even if the story about a town out of food and corrupt falafel ring didn’t draw many laughs out of the mostly partisan audience.

Mad Cowford now takes the stage for this split show. These 6 comics come from Jacksonville and are more oriented toward short form improve games like “You know what I hate?” I do know what they hate, its rap music and they put together a decent tag out routine about rapper Dr. I Killed Those Bitches” and his trip into outer space. They hit some solid laughs, kept up the pace and skillfully used tags to rapidly ditch ideas that weren’t clicking. This left the good stuff; they pulled off a train collision, shot a talking in monkey, and knifed Justin Bieber. They’re not subtle, but they’re funny.

The WHOLigans and Formal Apology

The WHOLigans have done some sellout shows at the Orlando Fringe, and started by a preshow where they collected their “suggestions.” That’s the name of a classic Dr. Who villain, and one their offstage members needs to figure out the villain’s name. Of course they can’t use actual BBC copyright names, so instead of “The Doctor” we have “The Adjunct Professor” who travels around time and space in a small Port-A-Potty. They work with exploding robots and a reasonably funny “hanging by the thumbs” torture scene, and feature lots of Sci-Fi in-jokes.

Following them we have three guys called “Formal Apology” out of Chicago, the world’s navel of Improv Comedy. These three dudes did a rambling long form they tackled the question “How do birds fly?” They were sharp and crisp, creating church ladies at an art fair, a voting booth and a dog pound. They kept up the story, but never actually got around to discussing birds. I liked them, but subtract points for never using the audience suggestion.

Dad’s Garage

Atlanta’s Dad’s Garage is back in town, and while they take some liberties with the audience suggestions, they create striking scenes – A Hooter’s waitress sells Hot Wings to Muslims and some guys get their buddy drunk and give him motorcycles keys. Not everything makes sense, and when stuck they pace back and forth and make animal noises until an idea appears. But I give them points for the father and son camping and alternating with grandfather relating to a dying friend in a WW2 foxhole. These guys were the best show I saw tonight, and I hope they drop by again.

Upfront Theatre

Four hours is about as much Improv as anyone should take in one sitting, and I’ll wrap up with Upfront Theatre from out in Washington State. While not as funny as other groups, these guys pulled together a very coherent long for story of a city ravaged by drug dealers and a crooked mayor. A few titters here and there, and no awkward moments, but what impressed me was sheer story telling. These guys built conflict and resolution with well developed characters and a bite of social commentary. Thumbs up – this show was worth their drive all the way across the continent.

The Orlando Improv Festival will continue through Tuesday.

For more information and tickets, please visit
http://www.OrlandoImprovFestival.com or
http://Twitter.com/OrlandoImprov or
http://Facebook.com/OrlandoImprovFestival

Spotlight Cabaret

Sunday, September 25th, 2011

Spotlight Cabaret
With Kevin Kelly and Kate O’Neil
Musical Direction by Chris Leavy
Winter Park Playhouse, Winter Park, FL

There’s this weird thing I’m noting about the Spotlight Cabaret series – most of the singers have extensive stage experience, proven vocal skills and occasional starring roles at “The Parks”, yet they all express this horrible stage fright at getting up in front of Chris Leavy’s pianos and singing pretty much whatever they want. Still, they all take the trouble to prepare an encore or two but they open with “Oooh – I’m so SCARED to be singing cabaret!” What do they expect from these Winter Park Audiences? Matt Palm in a brown shirt?

Kate O’Neill and Kevin Kelly have been bound at the hips and ankles for the past few years in the semi continuing “Musical of Musicals: The Musical!” and tonight’s they specialize in classic buddy buddy songs – “Side By Side” and “Bosom Buddies” flow with O’Neil in a her little black dress and Kelly in a tuxedo coat and jeans. There’s the usual banter and audience heckling until musical director Leavy complains during “Enough is Enough” he’s run out of eight notes. I was surprised that would happen, it looked like he had a whole case of semidemihemiquavers under the piano bench.

Kelly tried something unusual tonight – he created a drinking game that revolved around mentioning O’Neil’s name. It was a nice idea but it was too hard to keep up with and only a few of the diehard audience members keep up the break neck alcoholic pacing. Another unusual twist came with a country song. While we all expect show tunes, there are some decent country duets and one of them is “Your the reason out kids are ugly.” Truth in lyrics, isn’t that what we all want? So along we went – the singers seemed to overcome any stage fright in about 15 milliseconds, and they had an encore prepared – come on get happy” and “Happy Days are here again”. I tell you, these cabaret singers are all a bunch of sandbaggers – I’ll be they practice in the shower until they are fully prepared. And they don’t have to practice singing, they just work on their “Aw shucks!” chops.

For more information on Winter Park Playhouse, please visit http://www.winterparkplayhouse.org

Next Fall

Sunday, September 25th, 2011

Next Fall
By Geoffrey Nauffts
Directed by Eric Zivot
Starring Christopher McIntyre, Thomas Ouellette, Stephan Jones
Mad Cow Theatre, Orlando FL

I suppose we’re ready for a show about a closeted fundamentalist and his inappropriately older atheist candle-selling boyfriend, but the first act is a solid lecture no matter where you stand on religion or sex. Luke (McIntyre) is the twink with a wink, Adam (Ouellette) is the not-quite-creepy middle aged guy, and they seem to hit it off pretty well even if they disagree about saying grace over Subway or praying for forgiveness after sex. Adam is not Luke’s first man but the one that he seems best able to resolve his physical and theological tensions. Before Adam he hung with Brandon (Stephen Lima) – while not exactly orthodox, he keeps a yarmulke in his breast pocket and studies the New Testament, presumably for loop holes. Just as Judaism struggled briefly to integrate the Christian interpretation of their religion into their lives, “Next Fall” attempts to integrate homosexuality with modern Televangelist driven theology. It’s a stretch, but maybe dedicated people like Adam and Luke can find the True Path.

All the interesting action occurs between Luke and Adam and everyone else seems set up as a straw man to kick over. Butch (Jones) and Arlene (Peg O’Keefe) are the parents in denial – it’s clear what’s going on between Luke and Adam, but both have sworn to look the other way. Limas’ Brandon seems especially underutilized – he was willing lover but refused to publically violate community standards he flaunted privately. Holly (Elizabeth Dean) held the role of straight woman with gay male friends – supportive and sympathetic, she’s the mother figure who accepts all and judges nothing, something Luke’s real parents can’t handle.

While the first act was a hard pull, McIntyre and Ouellette’s joy and enthusiasm made up for a lot of brutal dialog. The second act was better, there was a great pay off between Jones an Ouellette that nearly justified all the hard work both the cast and the audience invested in this private drama. There are some interesting concepts here; mostly involving when and how we can reinterpret traditional Christian morality: On one hand, morality is a fixed point and what was verboten in 33 A.D. should be equally as verboten in 2033 A.D. On the other one can interpret details in a more fluid context – once rock and roll was the devils music, and now we have Christian heavy metal bands. He we push and poke at these boundaries, and it’s really not clear a mutually acceptable solution set exists, but the debate can tear people’s lives apart without coming to a conclusion.

For more information on Mad Cow, please visit http://www.madcowtheatre.com

Savage In Limbo

Sunday, September 25th, 2011

Savage In Limbo
By John Patrick Shanley
Directed by Kate Ingram
Starring Chloe Miranda and Rachel Schimenti
UCF Conservatory Theater, Orlando FL

Ever watch one of those Sci-Fi shows where the hero is stuck in a time loop and can’t break free? That’s where Bronx abrasive Denise Savage (Miranda) finds herself when she enters Murk’s (Bryant Hernandez) stifling bar. The back bar is covered with burry pictures of missing patrons and the plants are metaphorically desiccated – as he waters them he explains they might be dead but they don’t realize it. So are the patrons of this bar – while street noises rumble in from a more active world, these barflies are trapped in psychic amber. Alcoholic April (Kayla Zaniboni) nods off stage right, a half pool table (seriously – they cut a pool table in half, including the slate) sits down stage, and behind the bar Murk angles for the “Least Likely To Get A Tip Barkeep In New York” award. After Denise’s initial burst of energy, Linda enters in a tight dress with her morals dragging behind her. Her goomba boy friend Tony (Kevin Alonso) only bangs her on Mondays, won’t even discuss the Yanks with her and still Linda talked her aunt into keeping one of his crotch spawn. He can’t be as bright as he seems, he missed several entire pregnancies in the dark. We spend the next hour debating how to change ourselves, take control of our lives, and find some sort of happiness, or at least how to find someone willing to pour water on our withered roots on a regular basis. Marriage is proposed all around: Murk decides it’s good way to keep April semi-pickled until her liver fails, Tony decide it’s good way to keep his offspring from getting wuss names like “Alphonso,” and Ms. Savage – well, she IS in limbo, and as a 32 year old virgin the betting line runs she’ll still be holding out at 62.

Oh, where to begin…for some reason the author demands this play be set in The Bronx and while everyone generally kept to the stereotypical tough NYC talk, there were wobbles and this play could have been set anywhere and anytime. Murk was tough, but his insistence that patrons possess unconsumed alcohol at all times or leave wore thin, his joint wasn’t a blind pig but a semi-respectable bar with a semi-complete pool table. April’s character felt opaque, nothing really motivated her alcoholism and it was odd to watch Murk encourage her drinking. We’ve all been around alcoholics, they are not pleasant and no sane friend would encourage them. Tony and Linda were the most believable – with little to look forward to in life the mechanics of sex were the only entertainment available until the mechanics of raising children and fighting about it replaced passion. Denise was the enigma, and the unchanged soul at the end – there was no real reason she couldn’t attract a man, so why wasn’t she doing that instead of yelling at all the rest of us?

I want to like these folks but they work hard to drive me away – Murk the drink Nazi, the downward spiraling April, and the hectoring Denise make this a bar I won’t visit again. Linda and Tony were bound together for a life of shattered dishes and shattered emotions, but at least they have the commonalty of identical social-economic experience. Translated, they are the classic hard luck types from “Saturday Night Fever” and “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” but a great bounce in bed may be enough to keep their love alive. But poor Denise – she’s stuck in a clever title role that won’t take her anywhere, no matter what bar she haunts. This is deconstructionism and we don’t need happy endings. Heck, we don’t even need coherent endings – welcome to the post modernist stage where the souls are cut into random sections just like the props.

For more information on UCF Conservatory Theatre, visit http://www.theatre.ucf.edu

The Importance of Being Earnest

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

The Importance of Being Earnest
By Oscar Wilde
Directed by Jim Helsinger
Starring Avery Clark, Shannon Michael Wamser, Philip Nolen, Mindy Anders
Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, Orlando FL

Who hasn’t told a little white lie to get out of a tiresome Chrsitmas party or wedding recption? In Victorian London, Algernon Moncrieff (Clark) created an invalid friend Mr. Bunbury who conveniently becomes ill whenever Algernon’s imperious aunt Lady Bracknell (Nolen) demands his presence. She’s dropping by today with delicate Gwendolyn (Anders) and his best friend Jack (Wamser) wants to propose. Earnest won’t give his consent until Jack explains Cecily (Deanna Gibson) and the cigarette case she gave him. Jack has a double life as well, he’s guardian to Cecelia in the country, but poses as rakish Earnest in London. Algernon tricks his way into Cecily’s life, offers t marry her, but there’s a stalemate that not resolved until absent minded Miss Prism (Robin Olson) revels she mistakenly left jack in a handbag in Victoria station many years ago. All is well, and the critical social stratification is retained – rich marry rich, society marries society, and no one ever admits to passing gas in public.

As Wilde’s most successful play, this story is packed with gags to the point that every line feels like a punch line. Mr. Clark oozed class confidence and idle wealth while Jack offers the flip side – he’s unclear of his parenthood, and that trumps any actual skills or ideals that he may have come up with on his own. Nolan’s lady Bracknell is more than the dragon lady of an aunt, she epitomizes the whole of upper crust Victorian society – one must eat, breath, and reproduce, but none of that is to be discussed in her presence. We see the same bourgeois standards in “Spring Awakening” but here they are reduced for comic effect – tragedy is not in Wilde’s vocabulary.

The set is every bit as imperious as Lady Bracknell, Grecian urns hover over the action, Pre-Raphaelite peacocks grace the walls, and the set simmers in the warm glow of orange gels and brocades costumes. Opening night began with a preshow talk in a packed Patron’s Room, director Helsinger explained some of the more obscure jokes, the sound designer explained how they created bad piano plying electronically, and we are reintroduced to Wilde’s tragic career as an outed homosexual in Victorian England. This is frothy comedy at its best, the rapid fire laughs flow from the situation, the dialogue and the actors timing. It’s all over far too soon, but everyone gets a girl.

For more information on Orlando Shakespeare Theater, visit http://www.orlandoshakes.org

Satchmo at the Waldorf

Saturday, September 17th, 2011

Satchmo at the Waldorf
Written by Terry Teachout
Directed by Rus Blackwell
Starring Dennis Neal
The Riverton Playground Theatre and RedMoonJoint Entertainment
Mandell Theater at the Orlando Shakespeare Center
Orlando, FL

Never in my theatre going experience have I heard “cocksucker” used with such charm and √©lan. In this semi-realistic biopic of Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong Dennis Neal retells his story from the rough side of New Orleans to the top of the pop music heap. In the melting pot of Jazz Age New Orleans Armstrong leaned his chops, then he migrated north to the mob controlled clubs in New York and Chicago. He had his run ins with the mob, and as Neal so eloquently explains, “You need a powerful white man to put his arm around you and say ‘don’t mess with this nigger, he’s mine.'” Sometimes this was Al Capone; sometimes it was Dutch Shultz, but mostly Joe Glaser who pushed Armstrong from the improvisational jazz scene to the Middle American friendly pop sound. Professionally and artistically successful, Armstrong was still exploited and marginalized by his manger, but allowed freedom to do what he wanted. That included playing his horn every night and not worrying about the financial and logistic details of running a tribe of musicians. Its several stories at once – an exploitative musician / publisher relation, a black man finding acceptance in the face of entrenched racism, and a man loving what he does and finds a way to do it. All are tied together thought a strong and gripping narrative, a maestro exposition by Dennis Neal, and subtle if oddly lit direction by the long absent Rus Blackwell.

Teachout incorporates real details from Armstrong taped archive into a plausible reconstruction of his life. Sex, drugs and profanity fill the interstices of Armstrong’s life as the audience flows on stage. The small cabaret tables help blur the fourth wall along with Armstrong’s direct recollections dictated into the microphone and among the crowd. Neal switches between Armstrong and Joe Glaser with light changes that we decipher soon enough. I caught the opening night performance with its minor technical issues – Neal occasionally had trouble finding his light (or perhaps the light had trouble finding him.) All that can be forgiven, Neal fits the role like a pair of well worn tap shoes, and while he almost has to play the trumpet Teachout guides the story around that potential technical difficulty. This leaves Neal completely immersed in the role, but I’m willing to bet he could blast out “Hello Dolly” if called upon.

For more information on Satchmo, please visit http://www.facebook.com/media/set/#!/pages/Satchmo-at-the-Waldorf/103982393034054

Oedipus for Kids: The Musical

Sunday, September 11th, 2011

Oedipus for Kids: The Musical
Book by Gil Varod and Kimberly Patterson
Lyrics by Gil Varod
Muisc & additional Material by Robert J. Saferstein
Directs by Tara Corless
Starring Drew McCalmon, Candy Heller, and Justin Scarlat
Renegade Theatre at the Breakthrough Theatre
Winter Park, FL

“Wonderfully Inappropriate” is the best I can come up with after seeing this jaw dropping high concept low budget musical. Alistair (McCalmon) brings heavy drama to grade school audiences, his Uncle Tommy’s Cabin was big hit and now he’s exploring Oedipus with his Duck Dancers, (Corless and Marc Lingle) a sponsorship from an evil corporation and a failed marriage. You recalled Oedipus’s story – born to the king of Thebes, Oedipus got a bad tarot readings and is abandoned in the woods. Raised by a shepherd, he limps away from home, kills his baklava loving father, porks his mom, and brings the plague to Thebes. While he ends up blinded in a pool of coffee creamer, he really meant well. In real life Alistair’s wife Catalina (Heller) quits the company, takes vengeance on his infidelity, and has that embarrassing little plus sign turn pink. That’s one thing about classic Greek theater: it still speaks to the range of human screw ups that we still pull off today.

While the front stage material is funny and just barely acceptable to school boards across the Midwest, the back stage stuff is funny beyond belief. There’s nothing like the desperation of starving artists to laugh at as Alistair attempt to engross without traumatizing his audience. McCalmon is as uptight as Felix Unger at a tax audit while Heller is the earthy goddess type – she warns her ex “My uterus is not a game boy!” but it does accept quarters. Innocent and rather slow Evan (Scarlat) is leaning the theatrical ropes and while he may have gone to the Mentos School of Acting he has a one Freshmaker in his back pocket – Daddy’s Money. The children may not get the Bob Fosse interpretation of the plague, but there are ducks, and sometimes they bend waaaayy over to pick up dropped props. That ought to keep the little bastards till next week.

As the relentless positive action of children’s theater works hard to hook short attentions spans, this show encourages the audience to quack when it needs to gloss over a rough plot point. There’s plenty of sugar and flashing lights and cheap toys to entertain us, and if you have flexible legs and current yoga cert you can sit on a lily pad in the very front row. Yeah, yeah, yeah don’t bring any actual children, but once inside, feel free to talk out of turn, throw things at the stage, and laugh till you can’t feel your cell phone vibrate. This is one of those great back stage comedies that theater people will emphasize with and the unenlightened will ask “Can I book this show from my Charter School?”

For more information on Renegade Theater, please visit www.renegadetheaterorlando.org

Avenue Q – The Musical

Sunday, September 11th, 2011

Avenue Q – The Musical
Music and Lyrics by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx
Book by Jeff Whitty
Directed by Steve McKinnon
Musical Direction by Spencer Crosswell
Theatre Downtown, Orlando Fl

Masturbation, oral sex, even overtly Republican politics – you can do ANYTHING on stage so long as it’s done by puppets. This wildly popular show finally released the rights so small theaters across the country can take a shot at their own interpretation of this Adults Only Sesame Street parody. With an English degree and few other prospects fuzzy little Princeton (J.W. Moore) finds himself on low rent Avenue Q. The neighborhood is colorful but relatively safe, and he’s soon ensconced in a rundown building managed by a retired and equally broke Gary Coleman (Kendra Lynn Lucas). Here he meets equally lonely Kate Monster (Sarah Daniels) and the token humans Brian (David Brescia) and Christmas Eve (Christina Montgomery). Princeton decided he needs a purpose in life, and the Bad Idea Bears (Jamie Donmoyer and Scott Silson) push and pull him into all those bad decisions we all need to make once or thrice in life. It takes all intermission for Princeton to find himself, bang the stuffing out of Kate, and learn next time he should stick it out and get the accounting degree.

Not all the stereotyping falls on the People of Felt – Montgomery’s Christmas Eve is the hyper aggressive oriental dragon lady who dresses in take out menu drag and has never masters the tricky R’s and L’s of the English language. Brian tries standup; his gimmick is no underwear, which isn’t actually that funny. Meanwhile, the sound track is loaded with hits from the ballads “It Sucks To Be Me” and “If You Were Gay” to the wild “The Internet is for Porn” and the nearly heartwarming “Purpose” and of course, the hum out to the parking lot number “It’s a Fine, Fine Line”. The puppetry (MicheLee Puppets) was a blast, the humans and the felts mimed each other viciously, and if it’s tough to sing and dance as a human, it’s tougher to sing and dance and operate a separate corpus. Part plea for tolerance and part a celebration of the diversity of modern society, Avenue Q kept the audience roaring with laughter for two hours receive one of the most ejaculatory standing ovations in recent memory. Maybe the original was slicker or bigger or had better concessions, but this show is another smash hit production by the Steve MacKinnon/ Spenser Crosswell power pack, and cannot be missed. Just get the grandparent to take the kids up to Pinocchio’s; the little ones might laugh in the right places if you bring them along.

For more information on Theatre Downtown, please visit http://www.theatredowntown.net

Film Noir

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Film Noir
Written by Brook Pratt
Directed by Kristen Wheeler
Starring Trenell Mooring and Eric Pinder
Musical interlude by Shawn Paris
Boudoir Bombshells Productions
Sept 8, 2011
Dandelion Community Tea, Orlando FL

I don’t quite get the concept of a writer and director for an improv piece, but then we are always pushing the limits on form and style around here. This relaxed and cross cultural evening began with the song styling of Shawn Paris, a solid all around lounge singer and Frank Sinatra imitator. Using a karaoke machine that looked like a temporary basketball hoop, he did some nice crooning renditions of classics like “The Tender Trap” and “Dancing Cheek to Cheek” His red sport coat and black fedora gave him suave and sophisticated look, which clashed slightly with the vegan hippy atmosphere of Dandelion. Still, he got the barista dancing along with a suspiciously good looking couple who only needed large cardboard numbers on their backs.

As the even progressed, bits and pieces of the show drifted in – two guys in gangster drag, the always elegant Eric Pindar in a white silk scarf, and an enormous flashing marquee that threatened to crush Mr. Paris, and finally the elegant Trenell Mooring. Soon we are off to prohibition era Hollywood and short tale of jealousy, infidelity and death. Rebecca Davis (Mooring) is dead, and she wants to know who killed her. She’s right in the middle of a big film, and her husband Cliffton (James Canavan) just brought her the wrong diamond necklace. She suspects infidelity; he’s been hanging with the younger and needier Phoebe Baxter (Julie Snyder.) The director (“Danger” Bob Mullins) won’t recast the picture, but he does project better than anyone I know. The real seat of power lies in the bipolar studio head Max (Pindar) – he wields power and begs for it at the same time, and when he finally yields to Davis’ request, we find a juicy resolution.

Someone defined Film Noir as knowing that a wrong turn on the highway will lead to disaster, and perhaps that was the fate of our dead heroine. But this was more an atmospheric piece – dark and moody photographs hung on the wall, a dangerous looking model (Jennifer Allen) posed with a cigarette holder and a bit too much lip stick, and photographer producer and show mom Kristen Wheeler attempted to iFilm the show with a steady stream of non participant ducking under her camera line of sight. That’s the last thing a good Film Noir story needs – someone nosing around, documenting facts.

More stuff from Boudoir Bombshells is lurking on FaceBook at http://www.facebook.com/BoudoirBombshells