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Sweet Tooth. The opening scene is mesmerizing: a bare stage, a woman in a fur coat standing in front of a white sheet and singing "It's cold." A hand appears from behind the sheet offering a glass, sprinkling water on the woman, and then the sheet is removed to reveal a rose-colored living room filled with various strange portraits of this same woman. We discover she isn't really cold. She's George, a wealthy eccentric who has retreated from the world to create a hermetically enclosed, aesthetically perfect little universe for herself, one in which artifice is elevated above nature and a simulated event is superior to the event itself. With the help of two devoted followers, Hortense the maid and the artist George calls Mister, she invents fake interludes to appreciate. Pastry being about as artificial as cooking gets, the three eat a lot of desserts, and the result is predictable. George gets a toothache, and she has to deal with a very real, pressing and painful reality. A dentist is called in — a practical, low-key guy called Dr. Manette. Will he break through the enameled craziness with his forceps and angled mirror, or move deeper and deeper into the rosy-tinted trap, following a trail of poisoned sweets? There's a lot of wit and ingenuity here, and also guts: When the Buntport actors come up with an original concept, they tend to ride it through to the bitter end, not shying away from the craziest implications, exploring every possible crevice — which makes Sweet Tooth as intellectually stimulating as it is lively and funny. The production is a collaboration with musician Adam Stone, and he provides a series of strange, passionate and funny songs on such topics as abscessed teeth and Pear William cake. Presented by Buntport Theater through November 17, 717 Lipan Street, 720-946-1388, Reviewed November 1.

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