It’s never been a secret that women are comical and complicated. From the eras of Moms Mabley and Phyllis Diller to our current mavens, Tina Fey and Tracee Ellis Ross, women have stories to tell – they just need someone to listen. And a house full of cackling women, young and old, myself included, (and about 5 men, seriously) certainly listened on opening night to the duo performing at Booth Playhouse.
Real life friends Barbara Gehring and Linda Klein star in the ‘two-woman’ sketch comedy that takes them from puberty to marriage to menopause in about 90 minutes. Before the show even begins, the two are hanging out comfortably in Barbara’s room, on her bed, music blaring, with nothing but bras and undies on. Kudos to them both for baring much more than their souls to a sea of strange eyes.
The show starts slow, but quickly picks up speed when the girls flip through their diaries (supposedly their real childhood writings) and settle on the funniest, and sometimes most unintelligible entries and attempt to paint a visual. Barbara even kept a handmade Valentine card she’d given a boy…that he’d given back to her in rejection. Linda proudly showcases her beloved taxidermy squirrel, stuffed by her at age 8, in the back room of a creepy neighborhood barbershop owned by a creepy old barber. But, she lived to happily tell the story, so who am I to judge her inattentive parents.
The set is reminiscently creative. Posters of boy crushes and teen knick-knacks plaster the wall. An old school boom box sits at the foot of an ivory twin bed as an old clock radio letters on the edge of a matching nightstand. Trophy’s and sashes from braggable activities sit on wall shelves. The two incorporate funny songs about boys, the awkwardness of sex education class and the daunting task of squeezing into pantyhose. Who hasn’t knocked a knee or two, hopping around on one foot, while shimmying hips into the tightness of nylon?
I can’t imagine anyone not being able to relate to most of the subjects these ladies touched on. Well, maybe a man. But then, even they were laughing – albeit for the love of their female counterparts in attendance. Some patrons lost their secrets while allowing Gehring and Klein to use their personal property as props for a moment. No matter where you’re sitting, you could become part of the show, so be prepared for the spotlight.
For more information visit www.blumenthalarts.org.