El Vez | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

El Vez 

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I know, I know--when you hear the words Elvis impersonator, you reach for your revolver, too. But El Vez, the Mexican Elvis, is something special. From the splendid pun of his name to his heavily parodic stage show El Vez mixes multicultural polemics with popular culture absurdities to create a world with implications that go far beyond Elvis. This is not fun for the whole family: purists hate him and when I saw him a couple of years ago the show also featured two strange, surreal show bands--one with a tall, bald front man in a sort of Uncle Sam getup who, disgustingly, drank the fluorescent fluid out of a glow stick and spit it down his shirtfront. This show will be different: El Vez has brought along just two of the Elvettes ("Priscilita" and "Que Linda Thompson"), and backing him will be Bernie & the Boppers, the house band for the Elvis Impersonators Convention in Las Vegas. (They'll play sets before and after El Vez as well.) Expect nuclear-strength attacks on "You Ain't Nothin' but a Chihuahua," "In el Barrio" ("There's one thing she don't need / And that's another boca to feed"), and a hymn to the great god Quetzalcoatl done to the tune of "Heartbreak Hotel." Not to be missed. Saturday, 9:30 PM, Excalibur, 632 N. Dearborn; 266-1944.


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