DARE to be Funny
Much of the propulsion in Matt Bessers dance confection comes from the great breakdance interludes by the Bad Newz Bearz crew (Joel Lara, Jose D. Martinez, Ernie Rodriguez, Isaac Lara and Jesus Corla). The rest derives from Bessers comic-book satire of self-righteous programs claiming to use the arts to get kids off drugs. Our hero, Funky Bunch (Michael Cassady), sports a DARE T-shirt and tries to rally a clan of inner-city youth led by an aging homey (Hal Rudnick) who suffers the effects of a brain injury from dancing on the ceiling, as well as the complete evisceration of his penis from too much friction with the ground. Theres even a rich girl (Megan Lynam) Im not so rich that I cant learn to be poor. They hunker down in an abandoned office and rehearse their dance moves. Enter the Building Inspector (Besser), in the colonial attire of a Gilbert & Sullivan operetta, slapping them with a $2K fine. How to endure? A dance contest, of course, pitting their slick moves against the sleazy lap-dance gyrations of their opponents, the Dazzles, led by Drew Droege and featuring Allan McLeod, in a mentally impaired turn that looks like Christopher Walken with a high-pitched manic laugh. Dance-bulge codpieces are like visual centerpieces adorning the actors, under Lindsay Hendricksons perfect direction. Brian Fountain and Jake Anthony wrote the music. Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, 5919 Franklin Ave., Hlywd.; Fri., 8 p.m.; thru April 25. (323) 908-8702.
Fridays, 8 p.m.; Fri., Dec. 12, 8 p.m. Starts: Oct. 3. Continues through Nov. 21, 2008
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