Category Archive for: ‘Richard Connema’
A Fun Production of “Pageant-the Musical!”
Robbie-Wayne Productions is currently presenting the camp musical “Pageant—The Musical!” at the Victoria Theatre through March 10th. I first saw this 90 minute hilarious travesty of a beauty pageant at the Blue Angel in 1991 and later I was one of the investors in the San Francisco run several years ago. All it needs is some very campy drag queens and an emcee who is ego driven.
There has never been a beauty contest quite like the Miss Glamouresse competition, a fake television special put up under the title of “Pageant—the Musical!”. At each performance, a panel of judges in the front row of the theatre chooses between the same six finalists who complete in the traditional categories such as talent and swimsuit competition. These “gals” also hawk such Glamouresse beauty products as “Smooth-as -’Marble Facial Spackle , a nutritious lipstick called “Lip Snack” that comes in 27 shades and flavors and a Spanish/English speaking queen using solar rollers for the hair. This is 90 minutes up pure camp with no holds barred going a wee bit over the top at times.
Surprisingly the dialogue still holds up after all these years thanks to the wonderful camp all of the talented drag queens. The evening gown competition has some of the tackiest gowns in creation. There are many highlights coming from the drag queens especially when you hear Miss Down South played by Joe Deline sings “Oh Susannah!” and “Camp town Ladies” with a male and female dummy on either knee. It is so bad, it is hysterical.
Daft-Nee Gesuntheit less known around San Francisco as James Roderick plays Miss Great Plains. She has the most faked smile that I have recently in several years and she could be a double for Cloris Leachman . She delivers a hilariously funny dramatic recitation called “I Am the Land” which begins portentously with the lines “I am a handful of dirt” and goes downhill from there.
Tim Homsley gives a hysterical performance as the nauseatingly bungled Miss Texas. She gets the greatest laughs in the talent contest when she does an over the top tap dance number with a two fake pistols and shouting “bam” while aiming these guns at the ceiling. One can think of a bad Ann Miller tap dance in this number.
Kudos to Aaron Brewer as Miss Bible Belt. He is marvelous in his walk, movements and his asides to the Lord. In the talent contest he is a hoot singing “I’m Banking on Jesus”. Maurice Andre-San-Chez as Miss West Coast pitches through an interpretative dance called “The Seven Ages of Me” that must be seen to be believed. Eddie Bell also known as Cookie Dough is perfect as Miss Industrial Northeast” especially in the talent contest when he clomps around on roller skates while playing “The Beer Barrel Polka” on accordion. His Glamouresse commercial of solar rollers for the hair is side splitting.
Manny Caneri plays the emcee Frankie Cavalier smooth and snappy and his insincerity is there for all to see. Unfortunately the night we saw the show he had a tendency to put the mike close to his mouth making some of his remarks hard to understand. Hopefully that has been cleared up for this coming week end of performances. The drags are ably back up by Michael Anthony Schuler leading the musical trio comprised of synthesizers. The sets are glitzy and there are even some projections of “beauties” at the turn of the 20th Century on a screen.
“Pageant-The Musical” runs through March 9th at the Victoria Theatre, 2961 16th Street between Mission and Van Ness, San Francisco. For tickets call 415-407-7131 or on line at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/316620