Mary, Like a Virgin: A Divine Musical Experience 

Dillon?s Lounge, 254 W. 54th St.

The spangly blue and white robes of her “Salvation Armani dress” plunge to showcase her bosom and are cut high at the thigh to reveal shapely gams; she belts popular song parodies, quaffs from a sacramental cup in between wry jokes and stores half-eaten snacks in a basket holding Jesus’ childhood artwork. This is the Virgin Mary — brought to you by drag artist “Mimi Imfurst” Braden Chapman for a lounge act “confession.” Sound just warped enough to work? Well, it certainly is warped, if the aforementioned bosom didn’t clue you in (for those who like their Mary praised in novenas and crowned with May flowers, you’ve been warned). But is it divine? Yes and no. The show’s concept is the star here, long on tantalizing premise but a little short on substance.  The parodies range from the expected take on ‘Like a Virgin’ (the choruses punctuated by self-satisfied ‘Pop!’s) to a play on ‘Hey Ya’ (‘Shake it like a Passover Seder’), numbers which were sometimes funny, but I like a little more from my blasphemy; I’d hoped for more lyrical wit, more energy, more of the revelations hinted at in the press release. The tell-all feels incomplete, touching on a lust for fame and food but focusing mainly on Mary’s pact with God and love for “Joey” when there’s potentially much more Virgin to explore (a Jewish mother’s rage against the Pharisees, perhaps?). Still, this is a fun show — light, twisted and sometimes inspired. The lounge’s bar can only help make it sweeter.


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