Five Lesbians eating Quiche — Photo: RJ Pavel
“During the first couple weeks, we would all just die laughing,” director Jimmy Mavrikes says about Five Lesbians Eating a Quiche. “The characters are very serious about quiche and don’t realize they are speaking in any sort of innuendo whatsoever. This is their lives. They love quiche. They want to celebrate it. And it’s not anything more for them.”
The trick is for the actors to perform Evan Linder and Andrew Hobgood’s work, set in the closeted, claustrophobic mid-1950s, in full-on deadpan, truly celebrating their common bond over eggy tart. Not that the play, which features audience-led improv, is all about quiche. “In a turn of events,” Mavrikes explains, careful not to give away critical details, “something big happens, and they all decide to become the people that they truly are.
“It’s not the kind of play that you’re used to, where you’re just sitting down in the theater and watching the characters come to life on stage,” he continues. “It’s really a show where the audience gets to be part of it and actually gets to be a character in the show. The cast does a really great job of including the audience into their sisterhood.”
The play is produced by Monumental Theatre Company, co-founded by Mavrikes, Michael Windsor and Beth Amann a few years ago. “We realized that we really wanted to celebrate millennial art and millennial artists,” he says. “A lot of times it’s hard for a new performer or a new playwright or a new choreographer to get in the door.
“It’s definitely different for everybody. There are some people who are successful right out of college. But there are also some people who need a little push or a little step that they’re not getting elsewhere. And those are the people that we see things in, that we think other people should see things in, and want to celebrate them in our shows or do their shows.”
Five Lesbians Eating a Quiche runs to Monday, May 22, in Lab I at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, 1333 H St. NE. Tickets are $30. Call 202-399-7993 or visit monumentaltheatre.org.