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pornStar, the Play

from www.edmontonsun.com – Esther Kirkenchuk is a small town librarian. Once, in her past, she abandoned herself to a night of passion. She was a little surprised at all the mirrors on the wall and the theatrical lights in the room but it didn’t suppress her ardour.

Turns out that her partner was taping the whole episode. The budding entrepreneur then sold it to a porn video outlet and Esther finds herself a pornStar. In fact, she is nominated for “best amateur female performance.”

“I didn’t know people were so fascinated by small town librarians,” she observes in her best Little Annie Fanny voice.

So, wide-eyed Esther is off to that well-known sin city, Toronto, to attend the porn video awards.

We first saw local playwright Chris Craddock’s pornStar here a number of years back with the indispensable Andrea House in the lead. It’s now back in a production featuring Winnipeg actress Anne Wyman and I’m glad toannounce that, under new management, it still possesses its bite and humour. Craddock, whose BASH’d, played off-Broadway last year, is an assured writer. He is caustically funny and his plays always have an edge.

In pornStar, he creates a memorable troupe. There’s Kate, Esther’s sister who committed suicide at fourteen. She’s in hell. Her Christian mom neglected to tell her the facts of life. As she observes, “We didn’t know what we were doing — so we did everything.”

Mom, who has since run for the Reform Party (the year is 2000) and is elected, refuses to forgive the child’s transgression and the poor kid offs herself. The Gates of Hell may be closed but Kate is ingenious:don’t count her out.

Then there’s the jaded, and recently ditched, sex columnist Clarice DuBois (“I’m not bi-sexual – I’m omnisexual”) who happens across Esther in the hotel bar and, since she is off men, senses new blood.

In fact, having had a bit too much wine, Esther reaches out for Clarice’s steadying hand just as they enter the hall and the cameras go off.

Mom is horrified the next day to find her daughter’s picture in the papers under the headline, “Lesbian Porn Star.”

It requires a broad mind but pornStar makes you laugh — and think.

pornStar was reviewed at the Saskatoon Fringe.

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