Seat Filler: NYC Theater Guide for August 2010
BY Brandon Voss
August 17 2010 1:45 PM ET
Bianca Leigh, a transgender entertainer featured in Transamerica, seemed born for the spotlight in A Night at the Tombs, an engaging solo show that ended its Thursdays-only stint August 5 at the Bowery Poetry Club. Directed by Tim Cusack for queer troupe Theatre Askew, Leigh’s monologue, which showcased sparkling original music by Avenue Q’s Jeff Whitty and downtown performance artist Taylor Mac, chronicled her journey from Jersey to New York dominatrix club, where a hot cop busted her over a BJ. Not much happened during her brief incarceration at the Manhattan Detention Complex in 1987 — she’s sent to the men’s lockup, she flashes a breast for toilet paper — but it provided a sturdy framework for her musings on gender identity and the poor treatment of LGBT inmates. She also proved herself sharp as a stiletto in spite of various technical difficulties.
Put on your penis hats, ladies, because out director Trip Cullman is throwing the party of the season with Bachelorette. Leslye Headland’s blissfully boozy tragicomedy, which rages on through August 28 at Second Stage Uptown’s McGinn/Cazale Theatre, shines a harsh light on a group of messy mean girls in a fancy hotel room on the eve of their overweight girlfriend’s wedding. After discussing oral sex at length — “On a scale of one to 10, 1 being like you blow it kisses and 10 being you’re choking on vomit and semen” — the night gets more and more tragic with every second these lost souls smoke pot, snort coke, pop pills, and guzzle champagne straight from the bottle. “It” stage actresses Tracee Chimo, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Katherine Waterston, and Carmen M. Herlihy star with Dollhouse’s Fran Kranz and American Pie’s Eddie Kaye Thomas as the man-candy.