July 16, 2011 8:19 pm0 comments

altThere is no one like Justin Vivian Bond. With a voice like peppered honey, sex appeal that seems a product of the glory days of cabaret in Paris and Berlin, and a performance spirit that can both make you laugh and break your heart, Bond is a star for the new millennium. 
While Bond is known as a mesmerizing talent both here and abroad, the most recent news stories have focused on Bond’s identification as a trans person; more specifically that Bond’s identity does not fit into the binary gender terms used in our language and culture. As such, Bond’s full name is now Justin Vivian Bond, and rather than “he” or “she,” Bond uses the pronoun “v” and the prefix “mx” to best express the most accurate gender identity (and this article will use those pronouns).
This weekend, Bond make v’s Provincetown debut at the Crown and Anchor with the cabaret act Dendrophile, featuring songs from the album of the same name.
“A dendrophile is a person who gets an erotic charge out of nature,” says Bond via e-mail from Paris where v just performed at Les Sentiers des Halles.  “As someone who will probably never have children I like the idea that sexual energy can lead to a creative manifestation in other ways. So when I’m in nature I’m not just charged sexually but also creatively. Most of the original songs on the record were written while I was straddling a moss covered log on a mountain in Tennessee.”

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A Q & A with The Screw You Review

8:12 pm0 comments

altThe most homophobic entertainer in America is coming to P’town (No, we aren’t talking about Tracy Morgan). Bigoted entertainment legend Wayburn Sassy comes to the Cape for his Provincetown debut with his unbelievably tall, “suspiciously statuesque” girlfriend, Miss Didi Panache, in The Screw You Revue, an evening of comedy and music in the vein of Don Rickles and Lisa Lampanelli. The comedy team is the creation of real life partners Dewey Chaffee and Douglas McGeoch, who have taken the act around the country, recently making their New York City debut, as well as overseas at the Dublin Fringe Festival. Emmy Award-winning actor Leslie Jordan caught the show and said, “So funny I nearly sh*t myself and fell back in it!” The Screw You Revue is not for the over-sensitive or for those lacking a sense of humor! We had some time to chat with Wayburn and Didi as they prepared to travel to Provincetown.

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Mama and Her Boys

7:52 pm0 comments

alt After a sold-out winter premiere at the Cape Rep Theater in Brewster, the musical revue Mama and Her Boys kicks off a summer run in Provincetown with a fun, fresh, and heartfelt exploration of a mother’s love.
Starring Wendy Watson, Ethan Paulini, and Christopher Sidoli, who all also conceived and created the show, Mama and Her Boys is a clever and creative cabaret show featuring Broadway standards, pop songs, folk tunes, and several surprises. Though there is no dialogue, the show tells a sweet and tender story through its structure and the choice of songs. With everything from ABBA’s “Mamma Mia” to Bob Dylan’s “Forever Young” to “Everything’s Coming Up Roses” from Gypsy, Mama and Her Boys tells the story of a fiercely devoted mother, who’s a bit of diva, and her two loving gay sons who are about to leave home and start lives of their own, leaving Mama to decide what to do with her own.

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Neighborhoods 3: Requisition of Doom

7:43 pm0 comments

altThe topic of Jennifer Haley’s Neighborhood3: Requisition of Doom is the increasingly difficult to define line between reality and fiction. Specifically, she asks us to look at the hyperreal world of online video gaming here, in the process not only providing a forum for discussing reality vs. fiction, but also for examining today’s generation gap between overindulgent, clueless parents and their disaffected teenaged children.
The play is set in a suburban subdivision. The family life in these homes is what you would expect from any play written about families these days – dysfunctional, with moody teenagers, bored housewives, and confused fathers trying desperately to connect with their sons and daughters. The kids are completely absorbed in a video game called Neighborhood3. This is how they connect with one another. No one goes outside to play. No one meets up on weekends for dinner and a movie. And absolutely no one looks their parents in the eye, if they even bother to acknowledge mom or dad’s presence. But this is not just a play about dysfunctional family life. Rather, Haley looks at these things through a horror movie plotline, wherein the occurrences in the video game begin to affect real life violence.

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Flying High With Pam Ann!

7:28 pm0 comments

altThere was a time when flying was a sophisticated affair. There was a time when airlines served three-course meals and gave complimentary fluffed pillows. There was a Golden Age of Flying. And it’s gone. But there is hope, for the glory days of air travel live on with Pam Ann.
Savagely funny and wickedly hip, Pam Ann is the creation of Australian comedian Caroline Reid. Pam Ann first landed in Provincetown in 2006 for a sold-out weekend run at the Crown and Anchor to rave reviews. And now Pam Ann is returning for a one-night-only layover performance at Town Hall this Thursday.
Tapping into the universal misery and absurdities of modern air travel with razor sharp camp, Pam Ann has become a global gay icon. Tours of her native Australia and of the United Kingdom have sold out and led to a continental European tour this past winter and spring, a challenge in non-native English-speaking countries.
“I think they just like the color and movement,” says Reid, from New York City where she has landed on her tour. “I’m big in Serbia and Poland. Who knew? Can I get popular in America? No. Apparently I am very big in war torn countries where no one speaks English.”
Pam Ann is indeed big in Serbia and Poland, and throughout Europe. And in America she is gaining in popularity, especially within the LGBT community, which is where Pam Ann came from in the first place.

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There She Is, Miss Richfield 1981!

7:07 pm0 comments

altAs soon as Miss Richfield 1981 arrived in Provincetown in the summer of 2002, she became an instant hit! And this summer Miss Richfield continues the everlasting tour celebrating her triumphant crowning 30 years ago. As she zipped down Commercial Street on her scooter, Miss Richfield took some time out of her busy schedule to talk about the day she won the crown, her ministry of beauty, and how she keeps her figure with a specially designed diet of Tic Tacs and Sanka.

Provincetown Magazine:
Wow! It’s been 30 years since you were crowned Miss Richfield in Augsburg Park in Richfield, Minnesota! What has life as a beauty queen taught you?
Miss Richfield 1981: Thank you for naturally and quickly introducing my beauty pageant title into the very first question! It is my fondest memory of myself, and the theme of my new multi-media spectacular  30 Years On the Throne! I’d love to give you details, but I left my reading glasses on the bus again. Suffice it to say that most of my shows have a message. And I hope this isn’t getting too close to home for your readers, but the homos have such a history of crazy life choices and questionable decision-making, so I think it’s a great time to bring them a show about a successful life – mine!

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Prince Charming Returns to P’Town

7:02 pm0 comments

altTripoli is the bomb. Comedian Tony Tripoli that is, not Tripoli, Libya, which is being bombed. With the nightly news from around the world so serious and depressing, our culture has never needed comedians more. And Tripoli is a tastemaker both in terms of what is funny and what is to be made fun of as a top writer for Joan Rivers, who refers to him as “the second funniest woman in comedy.”  Tripoli made her, er, his Provincetown debut last summer and returns with a new show Tony Tripoli: Dirty, Sexy, Funny. Tripoli took a moment to talk to us (by e-mail) about his days as Prince Charming, his flirtations with Charlie Sheen, and the time he crapped his pants on stage in front of 900 people.
Provincetown Magazine: Right after graduating from the Academy of Dramatic Arts in Los Angeles you moved to Japan and took a gig at Tokyo Disneyland. What exactly did you do there?
Tony Tripoli: I was Prince Charming, furthering the rumors that Cinderella married a homo. But, c’mon, the signs were EVERYWHERE: He threw a HUGE dance party? Everyone was required to attend, like it or not? He spent the next day driving all over town to find a SHOE, because it was so FABULOUS??? Sorry, bitch, you got what you deserved.

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Creative Chaos

6:59 pm0 comments

altIt’s Monday night at the Crown and Anchor backstage at Showgirls and in the wings are a tall bearded drag queen in a huge orange turban, Academy-Award-nominated director Darren Aronofsky, and a naked man in a leather harness.  The lights dim, the packed house is cheering, the curtain opens, and host Ryan Landry bounds onto the stage in a shredded, bloody negligee to kick off another night of what has become a Provincetown institution. 
France has the Académie Française to maintain its language, the National Parks Service protects America’s national monuments and unique environments, and Showgirls is the guardian of Provincetown’s bohemian culture.
When did Showgirls begin? No one is entirely sure. When did it get so popular that sold-out crowds wait in line for an hour to get a seat to wait another hour? Who knows?!  Best estimates put Showgirls at around 15 years old. At what point it struck a countercultural nerve is anyone’s guess, but it most definitely did. And while it may look like chaos on stage, an under the hood peek at backstage is an illuminating experience as to what keeps this weekly freak fest going.
Obviously no two nights at Showgirls are identical, with the ever-changing list of performers, the time of the season, the moods of both the audience and Landry himself.  On June 20th, the night begins quietly, despite the noise coming from the line that reaches from the door to Commercial Street outside just before 9 p.m.  In addition to the proper dressing room behind the Paramount stage, Showgirls spills into what is normally the cabaret, where a pile of chiffon, sequins, and satin resembles a drag queen leaf pile. Davion Edwards begins the transformation to Felicity Layne to plug Illusions, one of P’town’s longest running drag revues. Scott Martino arrives to begin the transformation from handsome man to pretty woman.  Landry finishes shaving, puts the can of Barbasol on the counter, and sits down as photographer and make-up artist Bobby Miller begins to apply foundation to Landry’s face. After all these years on stage hosting a show as unpredictable as Showgirls does Landry get nervous?
“Hungry,” says Landry. “I get hungry.”

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The Writer In Question… Mr. Charles Busch

6:55 pm0 comments

altGreenwich Village has a reputation for being a haven for poets and performers, artists and intellectuals, from The Beats to the punks. While nostalgic accounts portray it as a breeding ground for all sorts of artistic revolutionaries, there was also a decidedly unpleasant element. Particularly in the East Village, homelessness, high crime and drug rates, and the sheer filth of the area kept the rents low enough for artists to populate it.
And then there was Alphabet City, which even in the 1980s was beyond “edgy,” it was downright scary. And yet amid the filth and squalor, creativity bloomed in the works of playwright/drag performer Charles Busch.
“In a way, what was very exciting in that period was that because it was maybe the last place in Manhattan that there were cheap rents, there were very edgy dance clubs, and art galleries were opening up there, and that was just the milieu of where we did our plays,” he recalls.
One of those plays, Vampire Lesbians of Sodom launched Busch from obscurity at the Limbo Lounge on Avenue C to the famed Provincetown Playhouse in the heart of the Village, where it ran for five years and received a rave review in The New York Times.
“I really was in the right place at the right time. It just literally was that six-month period that suddenly there was a lot of media focus on the wild performance art scene in the East Village. We were doing plays with titles like Vampire Lesbians of Sodom and Theodora, She-Bitch of Byzantium. So we were in every article. We had our picture in People magazine!”

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review of a behanding of spokane

July 15, 2011 5:00 am0 comments

altWhat do you get when you cross a one-handed racist with a bickering interracial couple and a bellhop who fantasizes about rescuing prostitutes, lesbians, and monkeys? The answer is hard to describe, but you’ll find it in Martin McDonagh’s latest play, A Behanding in Spokane, currently on stage at WHAT’s Harbor Stage in Wellfleet through July 2nd.
The play (for which Christopher Walken won a Best Actor Tony last year) is absolutely hilarious, albeit with a very dark tone.
Carmichael (Gordon Joseph Weiss) is a man on a mission to find his long lost hand, which we learn was chopped off by some “hillbillies” decades earlier. This motivation to recover a part of himself he can no longer use, yet feels oddly compelled to retrieve, brings him into contact with a pair of bumbling fools taking their first stab at the black market body parts trade.

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