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A CurtainUp Review
Dixie's Tupperware Party
By Julia Furay
The party — and it does feel more like a party than a play — is hosted by the outrageous Dixie Longate (Kris Andersson, in drag) —. a trashy ex-con, a three-time divorcee with lousy mothering skills and a trailer home in Alabama. The show leans heavily on audience interaction, with people given name tags which allow Dixie to converse freely with them, and on occasion, bringing some of them on stage. If you imagine Dame Edna as a raunchy Tupperware hostess who calls her audience "hookers" instead of "possums" you know what to expect. Andersson, Dixie's alter ego, who in in that guise actually is a real live Tupperware sales success , also wrote the script which he's been performing since 2004. In fact, an earlier version of Dixie's Tupperware Party was an award-winner at the 2004 Fringe Festival.
Director Alex Timbers' throwback staging, with its wood-paneled set and a costume for Dixie straight out of the 1950s (designed by Cameron Anderson and Camille Assaf, respectively), underscores the by-gone history aspects of the show, as do the naughty sex jokes, double entendres and contemporary Tupperware on display. And of course Dixie herself is aware of just how outdated she is since she constantly complains about how the Internet taking away all her business. But here's the funny thing: While everything comes off as pretty tired and our glimpses into Dixie's crazed inner world aren't all that interesting either, the show entertains on its own terms. Why? Well, for one thing, Dixie is actually a really likable hostess. She's charismatic and determined as she demonstrates the modern uses of each Tupperware item (and inevitably, makes a crass sex joke about every one of them). And she's a good saleswoman. I found myself actually beginning to covet some of the Tupperware on display. Most important though is Andersson's improvisational talent. A deadpan glance here, a wink at the audience there, and I started to think I was watching a real piece of theatre, rather than a staged infomercial.
Ars Nova is an ideal setting for Dixie's Tupperware Party. Nearly everyone brought drinks to their seats and many used the cabaret tables to fill out their Tupperware order forms and confer with their partners about what to buy. At the end of the show the Ars Nova staff rolled out carts of Tupperware for anyone interested in making a purchase. It looks as if Andersson has found a pretty original way to make a profit—both off and on stage.
Easy-on-the budget super gift for yourself and your musical loving friends. Tons of gorgeous pictures.
Leonard Maltin's 2007 Movie Guide
At This Theater
Leonard Maltin's 2005 Movie Guide