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Nine Dresses: Sex, Death, Fashion

cabaret & variety · brenda varda · Ages 15+ · world premiere · one person show · United States of America

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Review by PENNY STARR, JR

June 14, 2016 certified reviewer
tagged as: musical · fashion · gender · Feminist

What I liked

This show manages to capture what many shows about fashion neglect—the way fashion can define us, shape us, repulse us, seduce us. What starts off as a light romp through the performers closet becomes an indictment of the fashion industry. The music has great range—from singer-songwriter style songs to pop music to tango. The performers struggle to get out of said dresses at first appears to be a mistake, but then we realize it’s a visual metaphor with her own personal struggle for what it means to be a woman moving about in gender expectations.

What I didn't like

I feel like it needs to be honed with more performance, to hash out some very tiny tech issues, but that’s such a small criticism for this show.

My overall impression

This show should be titled Nine Dresses: A Study In Identity, because the show delves into how fashion can define us in ways which we weren’t even aware. The musical ranges from pop to singer-songwriter to tango. Just like a shopping addict, the shows goes from dizzying highs to terrifying lows. Do see it!

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