Seat Filler: NYC Theater Guide for July 2010
BY Brandon Voss
July 06 2010 1:55 PM ET
As her hit documentary, Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work, continues to expand into theaters nationwide, Miss Rivers took the stage at the Gramercy Theatre for two shows June 24 to commemorate gay pride weekend. Introduced by the Lavender Light Gospel Choir, her outrageous stand-up set, which kicked off a string of appearances July 7 through August 19 at the Laurie Beechman Theatre, was more aggressively cantankerous than ever. Rivers began by playfully banishing practically everyone — the handicapped, the elderly, people who like kids, etc. — from the venue. It seemed that only gay fans were welcome, mere hours after she’d shared those controversial views on the Hollywood closet with The Advocate. Rivers did repeat a few stale jokes in the second show, but we forgave her because it was hot, late, and, well, she’s 77.
The New York Neo-Futurists, a kooky collective of writer-performer-directors with a sister troupe in Chicago, have done Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind, 30 short plays in one hour, Friday and Saturday nights at the Kraine Theater since 2004. I’d never seen it because I’m not a crunchy NYU stoner, but I put my preconceptions aside to check out the group’s fourth annual gay pride edition, Too Much Pride Makes the Baby Go Gay: 30 Gay Plays in 60 Straight Minutes, which benefited LGBTQ advocacy in Uganda on June 25 and 26. Of the queerest shorts culled from their original repertoire, I laughed at dance breaks, sock puppets, and a pickle in Joey Rizzolo’s Superman undies, but I was also surprisingly moved by very personal skits from out ensemble members Christopher Borg and Dan McCoy.