Review by Stephen Desroches
Yabba dabba doo! If you’re looking for a good time that will leave
a smile on your face and a heart full of love than Miss Conception is for you! On Friday night of Labor Day Weekend the crowd at the Pilgrim House to see her brand new show Miss Conception is Tooned Out! was like any other in town as groups of friends and family settled in waiting for it to begin, laughing amongst themselves and making polite chit chat with fellow audience members nearby. But within minutes after Miss Conception bounded onto stage as Jessie the cowgirl rag doll from Toy Story 2 singing “I Want to Be a Cowboy’s Sweetheart,” she had everyone clapping their hands above their heads and swaying to the music. In short, Miss Conception is Tooned Out! is a party from start to finish.
Now in her sixth year as a headliner in Provincetown Miss Conception arrived in town already the queen bee of her hometown of Toronto and in Puerto Vallarta, whose drag scene is steadily growing thanks to performers like her. By the end of her first season in Provincetown she became a beloved fixture and star of the town’s storied, and crowded, drag performance scene. There are two features in particular that stand out as to why Miss Conception quickly became a sensation here, and really wherever she goes. The first is her comedic and show-stopping device of multiple costume changes without ever leaving the stage. Sometimes they are quick reveals with a spin and a snap as she goes from one character to the next, eliciting a gasp and laugh as each transformation is perfectly choreographed to the music so that when she begins to sing (no lip-synching here) the precision timing is remarkable. And the sheer number of costumes and characters, often well over 15, feels akin to a magician pulling a long train of scarves that just keep coming and coming out of a top hat. The second component, and perhaps the most important, is the genuine kindness and affection Miss Conception extends to the audience, which very quickly reaches back. A show for all ages, there is an ease to the room, which then turns to excitement as everyone feels included as no one is the butt of the joke, except for sometimes Miss Conception.
In Miss Conception is Tooned Out! the queen who entertains from the Great White North to the tropics of Mexico takes us on a speedy trip through cartoons in a show full of surprises, be it smoke and bubbles drifting through the air, giant dinosaurs and unicorns dancing in the aisles, and ingenious costume designs depicting everyone from Wilma Flintstone to Inspector Gadget to Jessica Rabbit. An evening with Miss Conception is guaranteed to leave you grinning from ear to ear and with the theme song from Scooby-Doo in your head.
Miss Conception is Tooned Out! plays at the Pilgrim House, 336 Commercial St., Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday at 2 and 7:30 p.m. now through September 16. Tickets ($35/$45) are available at the box office and online at pilgrimhouseptown.com. For more information call 508.487.6424.