‘Parallel Lives: The Kathy & Mo Show’

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Ladies and gentlemen, get ready to laugh! “Parallel Lives: The Kathy & Mo Show” is coming to USCB Center for the Arts on April 11 and 13, giving audiences a decidedly wicked and hilarious look at men, women and modern life.

Elena Martinez-Vidal and Dewey Scott-Wiley perform in the skit, “senior citizens taking a course in women’s studies.”
Elena Martinez-Vidal and Dewey Scott-Wiley perform in the skit, “senior citizens taking a course in women’s studies.”

Written and first performed in 1991 by comedians Kathy Najimy and Mo Gaffney, this playfully satirical series of sketches achieved cult status in its off-Broadway 20-year run and garnered the artists Obie awards for both writing and acting. It was also an HBO television special the first year of its run. The non-stop comedy lends unique perspective to a variety of female and male characters in situations that leave audiences breathless with laughter.

Now featured in community theatres across the country, the play will be brought to Beaufort by Trustus Theatre actors Dewey Scott-Wiley and Elena Martinez-Vidal, who have been performing together for almost 20 years.

Their characters range from adolescence to midlife crisis to the golden years, with strong views on topics such as feminism, gender roles, gay rights and religion.  The show opens with two Supreme Beings planning the beginning of the world with the relish of two slightly sadistic suburban housewives decorating a living room, and it just gets better and better. We get a glimpse into such situations as a woman’s morning routine, senior citizens taking a course in women’s studies, teenagers on a date, a man and woman in a country-and-western bar and two little girls trying to make sense of Catholicism.

In a review of the Trustus production, T.D. Smith, critic for Eventful website, said, “The joy of this piece is that we can all see ourselves — or someone close to us in one or more of these characters.  OK, it’s harder for a man.  But I contend that any guy that can’t laugh at this play is in desperate need of it.”

Citizens Opposed to Domestic Abuse (CODA) and Child Abuse Prevention Association (CAPA) will benefit from contributions at both performances.  CODA will receive a $1 donation for every ticket sold to support their mission of breaking the cycle of domestic abuse.  CODA provides outreach services such as counseling, case management and legal assistance, as well as a shelter, transitional housing and community education.

CAPA’s Closet will benefit with donations made by attendees of one or more articles of gently worn women’s clothing. Income from the thrift store supports CAPA’s mission to break the destructive cycle of child abuse and neglect by equipping parents, children and their caregivers with necessary skills, knowledge and values. They provide over 40 outreach programs and operate the Open Arms Shelter.

On Opening Night, Friday, April 11, there will be an after party with the actors at a private home in Beaufort. There will be a limit of 50 reservations at $40 per person. You can make reservations with your ticket purchase.  So get your friends together and plan to attend this entertaining source of historical, social and political commentary from a distinctly female point of view.

Performances are at USCB Center for the Arts, 801 Carteret St. in downtown Beaufort on Friday, April 11 at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, April 13 at 3 p.m. Tickets for adults $22; seniors $20; students $15, all seats reserved. For tickets go to www.uscbcenterforthearts.com or call the box office at 843-521-4145 Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., or purchase at the door one hour prior to curtain.