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BWW Review: BRIGHT COLORS AND BOLD PATTERNS Brings Belly Laughs to Soho Playhouse

BWW Review: BRIGHT COLORS AND BOLD PATTERNS Brings Belly Laughs to Soho Playhouse

In the one-man play currently at Soho Playhouse, BRIGHT COLORS AND BOLD PATTERNS, writer and actor Drew Droege brings 80 minutes of classic gay snark, directed by Michael Urie. Droege's character, Gerry, has just arrived in Palm Springs for a same-sex wedding. The title refers to a directive on the invitation that guests refrain from wearing bright colors or bold patterns. Gerry is incensed by this, feeling it's utterly anti-gay to be so "beige." He says he has nothing in his closet that would suffice.

What follows is a tirade of complaints. But Gerry's jibes and cuts are so entertaining that it's difficult to mind his underlying bitterness. The other characters (whom we must only imagine since no other actors are on stage) do seem to mind eventually, however. This is understandable, as it's one thing to sit through 80 minutes of Gerry, but hours of him would surely become tiresome.

A man facing middle age, the character is both funny and sad. After drinking a lot and snorting much cocaine, Gerry finally begins to come down from his manic energy and let us in on the vulnerability that lies underneath his disdain for so much and so many. The truth is that he's lonely and feels a bit confused by the newfound legality of same-sex marriage. Does that mean homosexuals are now selling out, becoming boring like all the hetero married couples out there? Does it mean there's now pressure to get married, even if you don't really want to?

Droege is hilarious as Gerry, causing the audience to laugh loudly and often at the character's antics, which include a number of popular culture references like STEEL MAGNOLIAS, THE GOLDEN GIRLS, and DESIGNING WOMEN. While the section in which Gerry lets down his guard is needed in a play that would otherwise be too superficial, this portion dragged a bit and could have been shorter.

Nevertheless, BRIGHT COLORS AND BOLD PATTERNS is an entertaining character sketch. It might not get you thinking very much, but it will keep you laughing.

PHOTO CREDIT: Russ Rowland

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From This Author Melanie Votaw