Tolins's script takes off from the fact that Barbra Streisand has built a replica shopping mall in the basement of her Malibu estate as a showcase for her apparently enormous collection of antique tchotchkes. His tenuous, trivial fantasy imagines what might happen if a gay actor of some sensitivity were hired to pose as its sales clerk and become friendly with his employer.

Billy Porter tries on Kinky Boots.
Matthew Murphy
Billy Porter tries on Kinky Boots.

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Buyer and Cellar
by Jonathan Tolins
Rattlestick Theater
224 Waverly Place
866-811-4111
rattlestick.org

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Why any playwright should find Streisand's mock mall—or the coffee-table book she's published about it and the rest of her home decor—a matter of deep dramatic interest is puzzling. What sells Tolins's silliness, however, is Michael Urie's adorable presence, as he slides with impish charm among the multiple roles of the clerk, his supervisor, his boyfriend (a Babs expert, of course), and The Employer herself, rendering every inane moment with total lavender-scented conviction. The play itself has to be sent back, but I bought every moment of Urie's performance.

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1 comments
judithcooper46
judithcooper46

Michael, You forgot to mention that the decibel level of the production kills the music and the drama and leaves one exhausted

 
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