Fringe 2010: Chlamydia dell’Arte

Photo courtesy of

courtesy of ‘erin m’

I’m reviewing eight plays over eight days for the 2010 Capital Fringe Festival, in collaboration with DC Theatre Scene. Get your button and join me!

With a title like Chlamydia dell’Arte: A Sex-Ed Burlesque, I just couldn’t resist. The name alone represents all things Fringe! Risky titillation rubbing up against camp with a classy wink? I’m in. Not to mention the added benefit of watching people’s faces twist up in disgust as the title rolled off my tongue like the first line of Lolita.

Gigi Naglak and Meghann Williams bring their special brand of sexual education performance art to DC’s Fringe from Philadelphia, and there’s something very Philly to my mind about this show. It’s basically a raw and earthy variety act. Impersonating everything from a pristine white-clad ballerina prancing about oblivious to her red-stained undies, to mustachioed tango dancers proclaiming the difference between transsexuals and transvestites, these are painfully hysterical and unafraid performers.

Interspersed between tidbits on essential sex-ed topics like how to choose contraception (courtesy of a gynecological puppet with an eerie vocal similarity to a certain former Alaskan governor) are video interviews of real people talking about attitudes towards sex. Though these segments didn’t really capture my attention and even added a few glitches due to equipment and costume changes, I was forgiving because of the unabashed riskiness on display. It’s a truly fun and funny show, guaranteed to delight or offend. Maybe both! That’s how it should be at Fringe.

As one of the founding editors of We Love DC, Jenn’s passions are theater and cocktails. After two decades in the city, she’s loved every quirky, mundane, elegant, rude minute of her DC life. A proud advocate for DC’s talented drinks scene, she’s judged the Corcoran Gallery of Art’s ARTINI contest, the DC Rickey Month contest, the Jefferson Hotel’s Quill Cocktail competition, and is a founding member of LUPEC DC. A graduate of Catholic University’s drama program, she toured the country as a member of National Players, and has been both an actor and a costume designer before jumping the aisle to theater criticism. Writing for We Love DC restored her happiness after a life-threatening illness, and she’s grateful to you, dear readers. Send your suggestions to jenn (at) welovedc (dot) com and follow her on Twitter.

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One thought on “Fringe 2010: Chlamydia dell’Arte

  1. Wait, did you mean riskiness or risque-ness? :)

    Jenn and I were in the same show and I concur entirely. This show and Handbook for Hosts are the two I have seen so far that really take advantage of the Fringe opportunity to do something fun and/or a show you might not be able to do elsewhere.

    What exactly that means is a whole other post or twelve, though I think brevity is an area where Fringe has an advantage over “traditional” shows and Chris Kilmek had some interesting things to say about that over at Fringe & Purge.