The Sex Diaries | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

The Sex Diaries 

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The Sex Diaries, Sirenlight Pictures Entertainment, at the Playground. Think of The Sex Diaries as a mixer, not theater. You go to the show, down a few Jell-O shots, mingle with other singles during intermission (aided by a clever scavenger hunt for people instead of objects), and finally attend a party at a tavern down the street, collecting numbers in the little black book provided for the purpose. The night I attended, there was only one single straight man in the audience, which seemed to put a damper on things for the straight women, but the situation should vary from night to night--and thankfully the cast doesn't assume that viewers are heterosexual.

Just don't expect good improv. The show revolves around aimless rehearsed sketches and audience-participation bits--like a Newlywed Game parody--which include some improvised characters, but the evening isn't erotic, romantic, or raunchy. Too often the actors seem frozen, as if they can't imagine how they got onstage (one exception is Troy Coleman, who does a nice paranoid turn as a character coming down from a high). Occasional inspired bits include a parody of Buffy the Vampire Slayer that turns our heroine (Julia Svoboda) into a blood-giving whore, but on the whole the show is amateurish. At least its flaws give patrons something to talk about at the bar.

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