Marina: “Hot Buffet Reviews, Let Me Show You Them.”

29 10 2008

Here in Boston we just finished our fall show, Hot Buffet (a dystopian musical satire). And now that the dust has settled, the set has … dustled (?!), and the dildo harness (courtesy of Good Vibrations, thanks, GV!) has been folded and put away in the Big Moves costume box, I think I have about a week to contemplate the experience before the next season comes riding in hard and fast and needing to be fed.

Well, “contemplate” may be ambitious, and by “a week” I mean maybe another 12 hours.

But there have been a couple of interesting incidents during this, the only tragedy/drama that Big Moves has produced anywhere in our eight years of existence so far.

1) We got a COMPLAINT LETTER, from someone who was offended by the show! She and her companion left at intermission because her companion was so traumatized by something portrayed in the first act that she was in tears. I’m not going to say what, because there’s a possibility that Hot Buffet will either be restaged by Big Moves Boston somewhere else or by another Big Moves chapter, but someone was actually moved so far by the content that she couldn’t handle watching any more of it.

Now, our intent was not to make people leave at intermission. There’s the whole tragic ending that we want people to see. THEN they can leave, shaken and disturbed. And I did send a compassionate note to the letter-writer–I mean, we wouldn’t have put a warning in the marketing about the scene, because that would have blown a significant plot point, but it’s always worth taking such comments under discussion when we plan.

But actually, I take it as a round-about, accidental compliment. Our depiction of the issue was sufficiently real that it triggered someone. Someone was offended, not by the fatties, but by a drama unfolding graphically, inexorably on stage. I feel like a grown-up director suddenly. Kinda… wow.

2) We got a REVIEW, from a mainstream print newspaper. We deliberately set up this run over two weekends, in the hope that critics might be able to attend, and be interested enough to write a review. And one guy did.

Take a look. It’s a pretty good review. I mean, we got a photo on the front page, with a jump to a full review and another photo. And he did encourage people to come to the show. (I’ll ignore the “strap on your feedbag” remark, because those poor journalists just can’t seem to avoid getting cute.)

But the big draw, in his opinion, was the big fat fatties doing pervy things all up in his face. Nothing but fatties, all fatties, all up in his face.

The producer side of me (about 85 percent) is all “yay! all publicity is good publicity! Sex sells! Fatties are sexy! Look at how skeezy we got! Exactly the ambience I was going for!” But the remaining 15 percent (the artistic side, see item 1, above) is sitting quietly in the corner with a stiff drink in her hand, muttering “There is too a plot. There are several plots. There are whole fucking story arcs. There are confrontations and secrets and melt-down moments that made people really uncomfortable. There’s a butoh-inspired finale. Our dancing fatties aren’t so fat that they block the fucking stage and everything that’s happening on it. Lots of audience members gave praise, some walked away quietly with very disturbed looks on their faces, we even got a fuckin’ complaint letter. Were you so distracted by the ‘nearly naked, harness-wearing twink’ and the heaving landscape of voluptuous, food-smeared fatties that you couldn’t see the tragedy?”

So, you know, slightly mixed feelings on my part. BUT, it was a review, a good one that brought in tons of phone calls on Friday and Saturday morning about the show.   If people came and got something that they didn’t expect, that’s not our fault. And it’s probably a good thing.

Fortunately for our fans and cast alike, the next big show, Fat Camp, is much lighter in tone. More details about that soon. In the meantime, yay for complaint letters and being misunderstood by the media. It’s a grand artistic tradition that means we’ve finally arrived!





Nellie: “Hot Buffet – Opening Week Audience Reactions!”

23 10 2008

Hot Buffet opened last weekend and, in addition to being a total blast, it was extremely well received by our audiences! Here are a few of the written comments we’ve gotten so far:

“You guys broke my heart. But that was the point. It was so powerful — the psychological stuff and the sexy stuff forced you to feel ways that were surprising! Thanks for a great ride, folks.”

“What a talented, risk-taking, courageous, entertaining bunch of fatties you all are. What a show! Hot Buffet brought tears to my eyes and goosebumps to my arms. The performances, the acting had power. Excellent book, excellent music. You continue to raise the bar.”

“Hot and Awesome.”

“Extremely interesting and creates conversation!”

“Beautiful, out there, different (in a good way).”

Don’t miss your chance to come see the show this weekend! We’d love to see all of your shining faces this Friday or Saturday at the Cambridge Family YMCA Theater!

Big Moves Presents: Hot Buffet
October 24-25
Cambridge Family YMCA Theater
Central Square, Cambridge, MA
Doors open at 7:30pm, show starts at 8pm

This show is for mature audiences only, owing to adult themes and partial nudity.





Coquette: “Opening tomorrow: HOT. BUFFET. OMG.”

15 10 2008

It’s finally here! My thoughts on the subject to follow later…probably after the run is through. But for now, have the full official blurb. And come to the show, if you know what’s good for you. T’will be excellent.

Big Moves presents:
HOT BUFFET
(a dystopian musical satire)


October 16-18* and 24-25, 2008
Doors 7:30 PM | Curtain 8:00 PM
Cambridge Family YMCA Theater
820 Mass Ave., Cambridge
Tickets
General admission: $15/adv., $20/door
VIP seating: $20/adv., $25/door (if available)
Student rush: $10 (15 min. before curtain, w/student ID)
Limited dinner/dessert tasting menu available

Buy advance tickets and tasting packages online at www.bigmoves.org

{ When self-denial is the law of the land,
the pursuit of pleasure will be a crime… }

After studying culinary arts for 7 years in Europe, Andrea returns to a United States she barely recognizes. By 2028, dieting is practically a religion, sexuality is stuffed tightly away, and the state has no qualms about interfering in either. Andrea’s friend Chrissy has a unique role in this brave new world: she’s a dancer and professional eater at Hot Buffet, one of the few establishments in the city where patrons can indulge just about any carnal appetite. Andrea gets work in the kitchen, and Chrissy is making money hand over chocolate-smeared fist.

Meanwhile, the Boss and her lover, the Emcee, do their best to keep the joint jumping, the marks fed, and their little bohemian family safe from the chaos and uncertainty in the outside world. But as society’s disdain for the pleasures of the flesh boils over into outright persecution, the tattered velvet ropes at the Hot Buffet may not be enough to keep the mobs at bay.

With ensemble dancers of all shapes and sizes and a passionate cast drawn from the best of Boston’s community theater scene, Hot Buffet delivers a searing indictment of a Big Brother future we can’t ignore and may not be able to escape.

NOTE: this show is for MATURE AUDIENCES ONLY, owing to adult themes and partial nudity.

TASTING PACKAGE INCLUDES:
deluxe mac ‘n’ cheese
finger-lickin’ spare ribs
backdoor fudge delight
coffee (with rich cream)
full-calorie sodas
Additional charge for having items eaten in front of you by one of our dancers.

*Thursday, October 16, is pay-what-you-can night! (suggested donation: $10)