Pumpkin Pie sounds like Halloween, and if you’re in the mood for a good, fun night of creepy and cheeky, check out “The Pumpkin Pie Show: Lovey Dovey” at Under St. Mark’s Theater from now until October 29th.
The show is a storytime musical review starring Clay McCleod Chapman, Hanna Cheek, and Sky-Pony, a band featuring Kyle Jarrow, Lauren Worsham, and Kevin Wunderlich (who bears a spooky resemblance to Michael Cera). Four songs of yearning and unrequited love introduce four stories of yearning and (perverse if) unrequited love: an eighth grader’s first French kiss at a formal dance, the true story of Hanna Cheek’s sexual fantasies inspired by her father’s movie C.H.U.D, a man’s unhealthy love for his neighbor’s daughter, and an unexpected, deadly romance at a condo residence for seniors.
In the first story, “Ascending the Stairway,” Mr. Chapman uses his rare abilities as a raconteur to bring us collectively back to the timelessness of a darkened gym, the musk of puberty, and the immortal sounds of Led Zeppelin. It’s a scene embedded in the eternal recurrence of adolescent life, wherein one’s loins awaken to the possibility of rockin’ out, and the tall, skinny lass with wild, insanely thick strawberry blonde hair, who is your playmate in this game of tonsil hockey, is just young enough to be a female version of Robert Plant. The man-boy’s musico-sexual obsession, bordering on mania, is as compelling as Stephen King’s corpse in “The Body.” It is the psychic space where Eros and Thanatos meet, copulate, and decide they need a restraining order.
That is to say, Lovey Dovey is the theme, but the mood – like Zep’s greatest hit – is Gothic. The marriage of these two great flavors produces much of the synergistic snap of the show. All four of the stories are delightful. I won’t give away too much, lest you think reading this review gives you a pass from paying to see it live, but I must aver the all-time best line of the night was “so, in college I fucked a C.H.U.D.” It just doesn’t get any better than that. And the possibility that “Daughter of C.H.U.D.” is a true story sends erotic shivers down my spine.
Mr. Jarrow (of “A Very Merry Unauthorized Children’s Scientology Pageant” fame) provides heart wrenching/warming tunes, and the ladies provide free mini pumpkin pies (for a price) before the curtain goes up. Catch it now, because it will be gone before you can say “pumpkin spice latte!”
The Pumpkin Pie Show
Under St. Mark’s Theater
94 St. Mark’s Place
Thursday thru Saturday until October 29th.