Big Gay Weekend Presents:

Meaghan Duncan

Armed with a Big Gay Weekend schedule of events and having been stamped on the hand with the word “fantastic,” audience members made their way into the Palace Theater on Friday evening for the Kinsey Sicks performance.

The Group, who perform satirical a capella numbers dressed in drag, refer to themselves as a dragapella beautyshop quartet and have been nominated for both a Lucille Lortel award (an Off-Boadway Tony) and a drama desk award for best lyrics.

Throughout the performance, which was structured as a mock morning talk show, audience participation was not only requested, it was required. An unresponsive crowd was met with baritone mandates laced with profanity, serving as stark contrast to the performers feminine exterior.

Called “Wake the Fuck Up America” the faux daytime chat program was comprised of pointedly sardonic news stories interspersed with witty vocal performances, most of which were reworked covers of various well-known songs.

For example, the 1969 hit “Aquarius” was revised with a theme inspired by the inevitable aging process, so that the infamous chorus now proclaimed, “Don’t let the sunshine in, too much sunshine and you’ll look like a moccasin.”

Despite the vintage costumes, complete with sky-high beehives and bouffants, aging wasn’t the only modern topic the “ladies” addressed during their show. Issues of race, sexuality and politics were all explored through clever humor. In a number which particularly kept to the general theme of the night, the group discussed through song the challenges facing the gay community in respect to marriage. Rather than making a serious Public Service Announcement-like plea for tolerance, the Kinsey Sicks mocked the unjustifiable bigotry present in the heterosexual community, indirectly revealing the absurd nature of this prejudice to the audience rather than forcing it.

As in the case of gay rights, the group dealt with the very relevant topic of global warming with comedy. In this instance, the most pressing issue was the fate of their fur coats should the temperature rise. Bits such as these allowed the audience to contemplate the global issues facing society today without feeling guilty.

Throughout the show, previously selected audience members were asked to join the performers onstage as guests. Most notably, the final guest was thrust into a mock version of the popular NBC program To Catch a Predator. Lampooning reality TV culture, the finale included a skit in which all the lucky participants were entered into the new game show Who Wants to be Executed (of course the bestiality-practicing pervert from To Catch a Predator won).

Overall, the performance kept the audience on their toes; the unpredictability of the performers made the evening interesting and a little unsettling. Through their inventive take on a capella and modern media the Kinsey Sicks provided a socially pertinent commentary on modern injustices, all the while expertly entertaining the crowd.