LOST CABARET OR KATANDOGASTROPHIC
nytheatre.com review by Joseph Langham
Katandogastrophic is a
katandogastrophe. The play itself feels like a poetry reading, as it
might coming from beat poet Gerd Stern. Gerd Stern is a pretty famous
guy and a few of his fans were on hand for this opening night FringeNYC
performance. One of his biggest fans spent much of the 45 minutes
unwrapping roses with a pocket knife. We the audience couldn't stop
paying attention to this constant rattling of clear plastic and the dim
flash of the little rusted blade. Which gives a strong idea about the
play. It just didn't grab our attention. Hey you, with the knife, stop
doing that, we might miss the puppets.
August 15, 2003
Some of the poetry delivered by the five performers had a nice ring to it. Stern is definitely not a bad poet. The themes of the evening are, "Don't pay too much attention to the quotes of famous people" and "Let's talk metaphorically about sex, baby." The actors all tried to give stellar performances, but with no real characters to bite their chops into, they all invariably fell flat. The acting was interspersed with a voice (that can't be described as anything but the voice of Stephen Hawking’s evil twin sister) giving us the quotes of famous people that we shouldn't pay attention to. These quotes were spelled out for us on an alphanumeric board that was so far away and with such a tiny font it couldn't be read. So, we really couldn't pay attention to them anyway. And, were there puppets? I thought there were supposed to be puppets. Didn't they give credit to a puppeteer?
Some of the audience seemed to enjoy the show. They kept clapping after it was done. They smiled and nodded at each other. They shot the rest of us curious/furious looks as to why we weren't clapping any longer. Sorry, I just wasn't so moved. One thing that stuck with me, however, was a quote, from a Saudi Prince, illegible on the alphanumeric board: "Keep your words soft and sweet, because you never know when you may have to eat them." We softly chuckled in unison, providing the biggest laugh of the evening. Perhaps it was because most of us were thinking rather crunchy and salty thoughts.