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Arts Watch: Theatre Askew Brings “Horseplay” to La MaMa

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Theatre Askew continues its celebration of the history of queer culture in New York City with a “biographical reconstruction/ridiculous reimagining” of the life of the 19th-century international superstar Adah Isaacs Menken (Molly Pope). Horseplay: or, The Fickle Mistress, written by Trav S.D. and directed by Elyse Singer, revolves around famous drag performer Menken and is dubbed as a “comedy-spectacle.” Of Menken, the team writes:

Once the most famous actress in the world for her drag portrayal of Prince Mazeppa in the melodrama of the same name, today she is largely forgotten. Known during the 1860s as “The Naked Lady” and “The Great Bare,” in her signature role she was stripped to a flesh-colored tunic and tights in full view of the audience, tied to the back of a live horse, and sent up a four-story-tall papier mâché mountain. SCANDALOUS! DANGEROUS!! LEGENDARY!!! 

The world premiere opens at La MaMa on Friday, the 13th, and runs through March 1, Wed.–Sat. at 8 p.m., Sun. at 4 p.m., $18.

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