Martin Burke, Stephanie Swenson

Martin Burke, Stephanie Swenson



By Migdalia Cruz
Directed by Barry Pineo
Presented by The VORTEX

In Migdalia Cruz's twisted riff on Beauty and the Beast, love is a hunt, a sport in which the object of one's affections is watched for, stalked, lured into one's lap, captured. Michael finds his dream mate in Citrona - a feral female whose head, face, and back are thick with masses of midnight black hair - and confines her in a cage, where he tries to make her love him. But Citrona loves Nena, the woman hired by Michael to bring her food. Nena, though, has eyes only for Michael. All are certain they can conquer the heart of the one they prize and so give chase.


Martin Burke, Elaine Williams, Stephanie Swenson

“staged with perverse glee, thrusting its sensationalistic bits - nudity, autoeroticism, sick jokes - in our faces with relish. Director Barry Pineo orchestrates the impact of every jolt and jab so that they always serve the story and keep our eyes locked on the scene, unable to look away from this thing that is horrific and hilarious. Martin Burke’s Michael is a GQ Jack Frost, projecting a cool charisma you could watch all day. Elaine Williams’ Nena is a wide-eyed naïf who knows how to use her ripe feminine form to captivate her prey. And as Citrona, Stephanie Swenson dances merrily on the line between beast and human. Her work here is big, gutsy, original, full; it’s impressive. The same is true of the show overall.”
— Robert Faires