Queenie and Burrs are lovers and show people; or maybe that should be the other way 'round. Queenie's a dancer who has suffered much at the fists of Burrs, nominally a clown but more a brute who can channel self-loathing into something comic. Their last bust-up has left them both feeling a little down, and so they decide to throw a party — a wild, wild party. Their guests are the royalty of Manhattan's theatrical demimonde: a producer, a hooker and her lesbian pimp, a dancer, a pair of androgynous brothers, a boxer and his wife. And then there's Kate, Queenie's biggest rival for Burr's violent affections, and Mr. Black, who captures Queenie's fancy. The combination of bad vibes, easy money, dangerous characters, alcohol and drugs that make any party memorable in this case create a Molotov cocktail that is lit and just waiting to be smashed against some poor sucker's head. Andrew Lippa's Jazz Age musical The Wild Party
dives deep into the smut and sadism our grandparents warned us to avoid, and when it resurfaces, not everybody leaves the apartment under their own power. New Line Theatre presents The Wild Party
at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday (April 22 through May 15) at the Washington University South Campus Theatre (6501 Clayton Road; 314-534-1111 or www.newlinetheatre.com
). Tickets are $10 to $20.
Thursdays-Saturdays. Starts: April 22. Continues through April 30, 2010