Dancing cupcakes: Another Doomsday prophecy from Tamarie Cooper’s 15th musical shenanigans
Say it after me: “You are the antichrist.” When you get to the asshole, you’ll know it. I don’t care if this ends up in the internet, honey. There’s much, much worse of me in the interwebs. Where are my dead Barbies?
I was not expecting to hear those kinds of stage notes at a tech rehearsal at DiverseWorks ArtSpace, though I should know better when visiting the fruitcakes at The Catastrophic Theatre Company, whose motto is “we will destroy you.” Not physically, but emotionally, with theater that elicits a strong response or tickles your funny bone.
(Auto-correct joke: Not bone, boner. It’s in the show.)
As for destruction, it’s the theme du jour that comedienne Tamarie Cooper hones in for her 15th original production, premiering this week on Friday the 13th and running through Aug. 25. Doosmday Revue (The Greatest Musical Ever!) is an apocalyptic twilight zone gone seriously wrong complete with dancing cupcakes, jazz hands, vaudevillian sass and many Cooper-esque quips.
Perhaps it’s motherhood — little Rose is 2 years old — that has unleashed a there’s-nothing-I-won’t-say attitude in Cooper’s writing (words and lyrics also by Miriam Daly, John Duboise, Joe Folladori and Patrick Reynolds), but this particular script is even raunchier than others that came before. There’s no nudity, but there’s a fare share of adult innuendo. It’s best to leave the kids at home.
There’s an embarrassing teenage moment, her real childhood nickname and the game she used to play with her stuffed animals in which she pretended the end of days was eminent, her bed was a spaceship and she had earnest conversations with her toys about which ones would be chosen to escape.
There’s no question that motherhood looks quite lovely on Cooper. She’s lost weight, her skin glows and during my visit the funny lady smiled from ear to ear.
I couldn’t turn down an invitation to chat with the redhead as she applied rouge and teased up her hairdo and the many wigs in her “glamorous” back stage boudoir. That I could sneak a peek at the opening number and observe how the cast of 17, a live band of four musicians and an army of 11 behind-the-scenes thespians juggled the end-of-the-world tunes — bonus.
Much of Cooper’s material is about her life experiences, with stories that date back to her high school days with Catastrophic artistic director Jason Nodler.
There’s also an embarrassing teenage moment, her real childhood nickname and the game she used to play with her stuffed animals in which she pretended the end of days was eminent, her bed was a spaceship and she had earnest conversations with her toys about which ones would be chosen to escape.
Camera on hand, in this Art & About video tête-à-tête Cooper lets loose on 15 years of Tamarie shows, her muses and the folks that have made this journey something she never expected, from performing behind a bar to productions on rooftops and spaghetti dinner theater.