Review: GETTING IN BED WITH THE PIZZA MAN at Crashbox Theatre

Written by Katie Folger and directed by Matrex Kilgore, this delightful production explores the complexities of casual sex during a pandemic in a thought-provoking way.

By: May. 10, 2023
Review: GETTING IN BED WITH THE PIZZA MAN at Crashbox Theatre
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GETTING IN BED WITH THE PIZZA MAN is a delight of a one-woman show. Written by Katie Folger and directed by Matrex Kilgore, this "racy and whimsical production explores the joys and challenges of being single and sexually adventurous during the COVID-19 era."

The show originated as a 30-page short story and grew from there, with Folger performing a backyard preview for select guests before launching a successful Kickstarter campaign to bring the show to the stage. On opening night last Thursday, the crowd greeted Folger's performance with enthusiastic approval. She is an actor who is gifted with the envious capacity to make the work of an hour alone on stage seem effortless. She has a pile of film credits, but Folger is just as comfortable on stage. And this show is not so much a play or monologue, as it is well directed storytelling.

Folger brings both humor and vulnerability to her story of navigating the dangerous waters of casual sex during the pandemic, beginning first with safe not so hot neighbors in Austin at the height of lockdown, to a trip to San Francisco for a hookup with a long time object of her desire. Is it ironic that Folger speaks of her pursuit of men in the same way that we are accustomed to hearing men speak about women, or is this her effective subversive point? I choose the latter.

I loved production designer Paola Cortes-Manthey's set, and Chrissy Paszalek's costume design. They are in a sense, a nod to Victoria's Secret, it seems, juxtaposed against a woman who is searching for her own sexual independence in a world that objectifies women. Matrex Kilgore's direction is enlivening and incorporative of the story. Rather than venturing into the possibility of pointless blocking to keep us from boredom, Kilgore makes sense of Folger's script.

At first blush, one might see GETTING IN BED WITH THE PIZZA MAN, as a well staged and entertaining story about one woman's journey of getting laid during Covid. Despite being described as "whimisical," this story can provide considerable conversation and insight through its subtext. I gave it a few days to percolate, and can now say it might even be worth a talkback after the show. Still, for those only there for the first layer of the story, Folger's thoughtful and excellent script shouldn't be obscured by her well executed humor, or the shiny object that is her gorgeous ass. (I'm not objectifying her, she says so herself!)

GETTING IN BED WITH THE PIZZA MAN is wonderful entertainment. It's also a chance to dig a little deeper upon reflection. Was this Folger's intent? I can only speculate. Given her commitment to representation of women in the media, I think it's a fair stretch.

And, yes, while it's racy, it's not Annie Sprinkle, racy. But if you bring the kids, you'll have some 'splainin' to do. I hope you'll explain to them how important it is for women to express their sexual desires without shame, celebrate their bodies, and drop the conformity of the patriarchy. Otherwise, just take the kids to see FROZEN.

I can't help myself in closing this review, so please forgive me - any way you slice it GETTING IN BED WITH THE PIZZA MAN is worth a taste.

GETTING IN BED WITH THE PIZZA MAN

by Katie Folger

May 04 - May 13, 2023

Thursdays-Saturdays

Crashbox

5305 Bolm Avenue

Suite 12

Austin, TX, 78721

Tickets $35, available here




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