This show is set in a women’s social club circa 1956, where the members (none are married) have gathered for the annual judging to pick the best homemade quiche. There are many jokes about eggs and cheese. And this is a show that likes to go over the top, again and again. For starters, there’s actress Amy Kelly, who turns a moment of uncertainty about discussing her sexuality into an all-out fireworks display.
Kelly also does a head-thwacking routine that is remarkably similar to a Three Stooges one-reeler from the 1940s.
But watch your forehead, because Kelly does again.
And the third time’s the charm.
You get the picture. This is a show in which nothing succeeds like excess. The biggest laugh comes when Stephanie Altholz, playing a demure Brit, leaps atop a table, goes onto hands and knees, and enthusiastically plows face-first into the prize pie.
This messy scene continues for a minute and a half. And there lies the rub. This kind of food-slinging humor made the Three Stooges famous – but their films were 20-minute short subjects. “Five Lesbians Eating a Quiche” runs an hour and 15 minutes… halfway through, I got tired of the shrill, relentless shtick. Its overkill, the theatrical equivalent of pouring a brimming cup of hot sauce over breakfast, when a few dashes would do the trick.
But on the night I attended the show many people in the audience were eating up these cheerfully demented routines. So if the sight of a young woman woofing down a quiche and barking like a terrier tickles your funnybone, give it a try! And if the prospect of so much loud, heavy-handed farce gives you pause… well, maybe you should look elsewhere.
The B Street Theatre production of “Five Lesbians Eating a Quiche” continues through November 15th.
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