Marilyn: My Secret
Though iconic Hollywood bombshell Marilyn Monroe's story has been examined and re-examined from almost every possible angle over the years, Marilyn: My Secret, Odalys Nanin and Willard Manus' take, treads ground yet unworn as it explores the star's bisexuality and lesbian affairs. Just after her death in 1962, a robed Marilyn (Kelly Mullis) flits about her dressing room, regaling us with anecdotes from her colorful life (which play out in flashback), including training (and sleeping) with early acting coach Natasha Lytess (Monique Marissa Lukens) and sharing intimate moments with famous striptease artist Lili St. Cyr (Katarina Radivojevic), who advises Marilyn to maintain "moist lips and loose hips." Mullis maintains that and more as her expressive vivacity brings to life the wide-eyed, childlike quality that made Marilyn so magnetic to the men and women around her. Batting her eyes, giggling with delight and prancing about the stage, Mullis also regales the audience with songs from Marilyn's movies. Nanin's directorial use of film clips that blend into live action is creatively done, and in detailing Marilyn's hidden dalliances, including one with Bobby Kennedy (Jamie German), the script pulls no sexual punches. If the early exposition and abrupt ending were finessed and the act break excised, this 80-minute show could be a real smash. (Mayank Keshaviah)
Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sun., March 31, 7 p.m.; Fridays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 3 & 7 p.m. Starts: March 30. Continues through April 15, 2013
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