Dames on the TL

Urban developers can dress her up and change her name, but the Tenderloin’s preferred eau de parfum will always be fortified wine and a quick buck — history and habits which have been hard to shake. Despite ongoing attempts to clean up the neighborhood — going as far back as 1917, when the Reverend Paul Smith led a “moral” crusade to shut down the brothels and was publicly confronted by 300 angry prostitutes — it has remained a haven and a hunting ground for hookers, junkies, winos, gamblers, gangsters, and sexual adventurers. Lady of the 'Loin, a song cycle by Don Seaver and Sean Owens, celebrates the unrepentant, barefaced, seedy spirit of the place with songs like “It’s Always a Dame,” “Homicide’s a Gift,” and “Out Here on the Edge.” Set up by Owens’ signature humor and Seaver’s moody noir composition, Lady brought down the house when it appeared as part of DIVAfest this past spring. Chanteuse Shannon Day, who has recorded with numerous jazz bands as well as both the San Francisco and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, has the vocal chops to make your skin prickle, even while her tongue is firmly in cheek. If you’ve forgotten why you should “Eat at Joe’s,” Lady will remind you.
July 25-Aug. 15, 9 p.m., 2009

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