Saturday, March 01, 2008

Beebo Brinker Chronicles

Photo/Dixie Sheridan

There's a moment where the text of Ann Bannon's 50s lesbian pulp novels is really turned to flesh -- a hot, torrid scene of tangled emotions that feels
real, despite the intentionally cheesy writing. But Leigh Silverman's sparse direction ends up focusing too much on the swaggering one-liners, and while Marin Ireland, David Greenspan, and Carolyn Bauemler find ways to balance witticisms like "We can't think straight because we always think gay" with honest lines like "Do you think some pretty twenty-five year old is going to fall for a bald, middle-aged bastard without a bank roll to offer?" the same can't be said for Autumn Dornfeld, who relies too heavily on telegraphed actions, or Jenn Colella, who has to work so hard to make us buy her brutish turn as Beebo that she has little energy left to do anything else. For all that, I guess I'm a sucker for camp, because I still had a good time at Beebo Brinker Chronicles; I just wish the play had found better ways to balance the threads.

[Read on] [Also blogged by: David | Patrick]


Anonymous said...

I had a great time at "Beebo" as well and agree with many of the criticisms.

Go to laugh and see some sexy lesbians, but don't go to be moved.

Still I think it's worth checking out before closing, if for nothing else, for the tribute the production pays to Ann Bannon and her historic and groundbreaking novels.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with Ginger. The production does pay tribute to Ann. As a fan of the books, it was really cool to see them brought to life.

But the show isn't just for fans. I took my girlfriend, who didn't even know who Ann Bannon was, and she enjoyed the show just as much as I did. I found myself laughing almost all the way through, and the cast isn't so bad looking either ;-)