Reviewer: Adrienne Sowers
During her time on RuPaul’s Drag Race, drag superstar BenDeLaCreme described herself as “terminally delightful.” In her latest solo show, Inferno A Go-Go! at the Laurie Beechman Theatre, LaCreme kills the audience with her signature kindness and then positions herself as the best tour guide anyone could hope for through the fiery afterlife.
LaCreme’s high-camp humor meets social commentary as she takes on Trump, #AllLivesMatter, and the NRA, and that’s just one of the seven circles of hell. Inspired by Dante’s Inferno, the audience journeys through all the circles of the underworld, meeting party-girl puppets, mean-girl messengers of God, fierce furies, and a heartbreaking harpy along the way. The craft present in every choice is exemplary. LaCreme utilizes filmed footage, with herself in every role, to introduce settings and characters, creating a fabulous and campy version of eternal damnation. Amid the zippy one-liners and sassy social commentary is an exquisitely heartbreaking moment with a puppet harpy among a forest of trees inhabited by souls that had committed suicide. As LaCreme emotionally begs the question of why some souls are damned and others are not, the scene whisks to a deeper circle of hell, a gay beach full of camp and sass and laughter.
BenDeLaCreme’s storytelling ability is nothing short of brilliant. The puppetry is astounding, the costumes are superb—sequins and hellfire are a fabulous combination—and the performance never loses its heart among the camp and flash. BenDeLaCreme takes a journey through hell, and turns it into a heavenly experience.
Runs until 19 August 2016