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Lust in Translation

To quote F.T. Marinetti’s Futurists Manifesto of 1909, “Standing on the world's summit, we launch once again our insolent challenge to the stars!” Enter Theatre in My Basement’s XO_tic -- a veneration of absurdity by playwright Chris Danowski, who joined forces with ASU's Eva Hamilton and Louis Farber to create what they call “an Artaudian assault on your senses." The trio allowed New Times to preview one scene in which an unsmiling blonde lies across a bed while two men gyrate in front of the camera to Loverboy's "Turn Me Loose." Afterward, Danowski, Hamilton, and Farber speak urgently about vampires, mermaids, and the lust wound into the piece. When Danowski says people might be afraid of feeling dumb and not getting it, Eva mutters, "They're just afraid they'll realize they are dumb." Ouch.

Oh, well. Danowski’s never been one to spoon-feed the public -- which may account for some low attendance rates at performances of his works – and his absurdist experiments involving breaching the fourth wall, traversing metatheater, and wringing comedy out of strange, horrific images have put him, as the rock philosopher David Byrne put it, "on a road to nowhere." We're lucky that nowhere is Phoenix.

April 25-26, 7:30 p.m., 2008


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