Loading...

Down & Dirty 

Thursday, Aug 9 2012
Comments
With its 10-person, almost-all-female troupe of beautiful, corseted dancers stripping and singing to a selection of bawdy American songbook classics, creator-director Vanessa Cate's delightfully fetish-tinged cabaret of "seduction and intrigue" might seem little more than another slightly naughty night of neo-burlesque cabaret. And what's not to like about that? But Cate has a more serious purpose in mind than mere musical titillation. The seduction begins with Natalie Stevei's schoolgirl-uniform striptease to Sally Bowles' "Don't Tell Mama" number from Cabaret, then races through damaged torch songs like Marlene Dietrich's "Falling in Love Again" (sung by Jade Waters Burch), as well as comedy turns like Cate's double-reverse-drag rendition of Cabaret's "Two Ladies" (with Timothy Alonzo and choreographer Natalie Hyde) and the femme fatale-full "Cellblock Tango" from Chicago. With Gracy Ramirez's bleakly ironic, black-and-blue spin on the Ella Fitzgerald sugar-daddy standard "Gee Baby, Ain't I Good to You," Cate laces the evening's rampant hedonism with sobering hints at its emotional and physical costs. Everything is finally brought into fine focus with the closing, company-performed finale of "No Regrets": Edith Piaf's stirring anthem of resilience in the face of youthful follies neatly redeems the show's luridly pandering, all-male-authored music as rousing -- and arousing -- celebrations of female sexual empowerment. Zombie Joe's Underground Theatre, 4850 Lankershim Blvd., N. Hlywd.; Sat., 11 p.m.; through Sept. 15. (818) 202-4120, zombiejoes.com.
Saturdays, 11 p.m. Starts: Aug. 4. Continues through Sept. 29, 2012
click to enlarge 8239002.t.jpg

Location Info

Related Stories

  • Einstein on the shelf

    Matt Lipps' photographs always have remarkably vivid backgrounds, and his new series is no exception. Teals and crimsons with abstract patterns or fabriclike folds grab your eye, but in his current show at Marc Selwyn, the images that appear in front of those backgrounds are more subdued. You see black-and-white...
  • Theater to See This Week, Including Sapphic Garbo and Dietrich

    Odalys Nanin's speculative drama Garbo's Cuban Lover concerns a certain coziness between Greta Garbo and 1930s poet, playwright and novelist Mercedes de Acosta, who was also cozy with Marlene Dietrich. It's not the first time the play has been presented at the Macha Theatre, but it is nevertheless this week's Pick. Also...
  • Best Cemetery to Visit Jazz Legends

    Inglewood Park Cemetery
  • Art to See

    MOCA becomes a vintage movie theater this week, and Little Red Riding Hood becomes a wolf. 5. Station chief As is often the case with the Getty's historical shows, this one about Union Station's past and future, held offsite in a regal space on the second floor of downtown's Central Library,...
  • A Lesbian Vampire Play

    Long before vampire mythology was reduced to twee Hollywood allegories about tween sexual angst, 19th century gothic writers like Bram Stoker and Sheridan Le Fanu employed it to explore the psychological no man's land between their era's forbidden carnal desires and British society's tyrannical puritan repression. Carmilla, David MacDowell Blue's...
Reach the writer at braden@laweekly.com

Related Content

Related Locations

Now Trending