Tiff and Mom and the Meaning of the Magi Gift Mix-Up | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Tiff and Mom and the Meaning of the Magi Gift Mix-Up 

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TIFF AND MOM AND THE MEANING OF THE MAGI GIFT MIX-UP, Corn Productions, at the Cornservatory. Directed by "Scruffy Mufflekiss," this 40-minute late-night offering succeeds October's Tales From Mom's Crypt III as the latest perpetration of the saga of Tiffani Tay-anya Tiffelmeyer and Mom Tiffelmeyer. Foulmouthed, sex hungry, and food crazed, the Berwyn mother-and-daughter duo have grown into quite the cult figures over the last five years--and fortunately they're still alive.

Written and performed by Robert Bouwman and Todd Schaner, the Christmas edition twists "The Gift of the Magi," O. Henry's beloved story about shopping gone wrong, into a dipsy-doodle domestic screwup worthy of the fabulously dysfunctional Tiff and Mom. The pathetic, scraggly, indifferently decorated Christmas bush onstage says it all. Desperate to give each other Christmas presents to be treasured for a lifetime, the "babes from Berwyn" visit (and play the proprietors of) Madame Samantha's Wigge Shoppe and Psychic Emporium, Ming Long's Crazy Christmas Gift and Nut Store, and Berwyn Square's Farmer Market and Jeweler's Faire. Predictably, the sacrifices they make mock the gifts they receive: a set of scrunchies for Tiff's lustrous hair and a clasp for Mom's gold tit clamps.

Along the way Tiff and Mom break into potty-mouthed songs by Scott Lamberty; Bouwman and Schaner deliver the gag-inducing lyrics with rubber-faced abandon. This show may be alternately dumb and dirty, but it's still more laughs than a barrel of suburbanites. --Lawrence Bommer

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