Theater archives

What Does Death Consist Of? A New Show Says It’s A Bad Cabaret Song!


Death is usually represented as a trip into a darkening tunnel or a flight to heaven on the back of a gothic angel.

It’s usually made to seem way more appealing than it really is.

But an inventively designed show called The Etiquette of Death at La MaMa presents a much more harrowing vision of what happens.

Etiquette is an avant-garde musical collage of sketches, poetry, and songs, built around the premise of a woman named Joan Girdler (Chris Tanner, who produced) who gets a bad diagnosis for herself as her son withers in the hospital.

When death finally comes, it’s in the form of Death himself (Everett Quinton, who directed), and he’s got a horrid plan.

Ms. Girdler is made to sing that icky cabaret song “Don’t Cry Out Loud” while a deathly accomplice sits on her head!

Can you imagine anything more upsetting?

You’ll die!

Photos: Ves Pitts