Sunday, June 9, 2013

Burnt at the Steak


Carolann Valentino Productions of NYC, presented a one-woman musical featuring 18 hilarious characters portrayed through song, dance, comedy and audience improvisation at the Orlando Fringe. She reenacted her time managing a multi million dollar steakhouse in NYC. The one thing I learned is that you can earn $200,000 a year managing the service staff at such a restaurant. Unfortunately such a job is all consuming allowing little time to go to auditions as an actress.

One guy got up from his seat in the audience mid way through the show and exited through the fire exit. I was seated on my artist stool next to the exit so I closed the door behind him to keep the harsh sunlight from cutting across the stage. I wondered if he couldn't stand the show or if he had to pee after drinking too many beers in the beer tent. The fire exit wouldn't close completely but at least it didn't set off an alarm.

As an autobiographical piece, the act seemed a bit self serving. The salary mentions came across as bragging and the imitations of the staff she managed seemed comic at the staff's expense. Carolann called several men up to sit in the restaurant chairs and she had some flirty interactive fun with them. The musical number with audience participation, highlighted all the different cuts of beef using a Sound of Music song as the foundation. Orlando is a service industry town and this show made me realize that I never want to work in a restaurant. Of course in Orlando you are lucky to make minimum wage with no benefits. The premise of the show was sound, but it seemed to run too long.

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