Kinsey Sicks: Oy Vey in a Manger

We can't resist "I Had a Little Facial, I Made It Out of Clay" or an offensive "Feliz Navidad."

Details

Through Jan. 3

Tickets are $25-34

861-8972

www.nctcsf .org

New Conservatory Theatre Center, 25 Van Ness (near Market), S.F.

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The Kinsey Sicks' first holiday show joins the campy ranks of The Hard Nut, Christmas With the Crawfords, and A Karen Carpenter Christmas, and it's a brilliant, raunchy gem. (For those virgins out there, the Kinsey Sicks, "America's Favorite Dragapella Beautyshop Quartet," formed 10 years ago in the Castro District and now tour extensively.) In this production, drag queens Winnie, Trampolina, Trixie, and Rachel prepare for their annual holiday party. Their guests are late, and that's the whole plot -- barely a hook on which to hang bad jokes and better storytelling songs. Hardly anything escapes their bitchy scrutiny: Jews for Jesus, Guatemalan babies, biracial gay couples, drunken office Christmas parties, cloning, gays in the military, and passive-aggressive relatives. The jokes range from clever to beyond the pale (one of the worst: "The Donner Party -- I had a ball there"); booing and hissing just encourages them. The songs are the real reason to see Oy Vey. Christmas songs, Jewish songs, and show tunes all get sparkling treatment and impressive harmonization. To talk about them too much would give away the fun, but highlights include "I Had a Little Facial, I Made It Out of Clay," Trixie's "Crystal Bells" (she's Whitney Houston), the really offensive "Feliz Navidad" (with explicit sexual language), and the "Macarena" revised as a Lithuanian Jewish folk dance. The troupe's characterizations are also colorful. Chris Dilley's Trampolina is like a deranged Charlotte in Sex and the City (OK, veryderanged), while Irwin Keller's Winnie is the perfect obsessive-compulsive leader. Ben Schatz's Rachel is a stocky brute of a Jewish girl, both highly sexed and highly aggressive; Kevin Smith Kirkwood's Trixie looks innocent, but there's a naughty glint in her eye. The Kinsey Sicks mostly appeal to gays, drag queens, and divas and will offend anyone who doesn't have a sense of humor about religion; that said, if you love guilty pleasures and have a twisted funny bone, don't let this show pass you by.

 
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