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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, May 7, 2010 - Volume 38 Issue 19
You Shut Up and listen to Lauren Weedman
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
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You Shut Up and listen to Lauren Weedman

by Miryam Gordon - SGN A&E Writer

No...You Shut Up
Richard Hugo House
May 7-8


People who meet Lauren Weedman may not realize that they can become fodder for her intensely personal stage shows. Weedman is an insanely keen observer of human behavior and foibles and can boil you down to an instantly recognizable character type. Her talent for plumbing her own (and others') depth of emotions is on view for only one more weekend at Richard Hugo House on May 7 and 8. Many people wish she'd stay longer.

Weedman spent many years in Seattle, but is now plying her comedic talents mostly around Los Angeles and slowly gaining more widespread recognition for her comedy. She has a high-profile role in the new movie Date Night with Tina Fey and Steve Carell. She developed a webisodic show called Our Bodies, Myself, giving life to an almost clueless advice-spouting woman and spoofing both advice shows and reality TV at the same time.

The newest of her nine one-woman shows, No&You Shut Up explores her discomfort with "family," exposing a push-pull desire to connect and flee from them. The show opens with her on a first date with a man who lives on the same block as, and likes to sing with, his family. She is so appalled by that notion of family togetherness that it spells instant doom for the evening.

We're introduced to her mother, who has never spoken about the day Lauren was adopted. Mom proceeds to describe the day she says she'll never forget, ending with, "We brought you home and then your father had a sandwich." And why did they feel the need to adopt? "We had two girls and still had all the clothing." This romantic vision of adoption clearly colored Lauren's experience of family.

Family connections and their complexities are universal issues. There probably isn't even an exception to the statement that "everyone's got 'em." Weedman's personal anecdotes reveal the complex feelings we harbor for our own families. She is unflinching in her depictions of her own mistakes and stupidities, which conversely allows us to feel huge affection for her.

This, the latest of her shows, is a progressive revelation of her life. It's almost like a theater blog. It deals with a period just before her current, completely different circumstances, where she doesn't have a relationship, isn't sure how to get or keep one, and has to get a tattoo on her wrist to remind her to have faith in her own instincts and abilities. It may well be that her best stuff is yet to come, as great as all the stuff before has been.

She is in a stable relationship and has just had a baby boy. So, here comes the eagle eye, the eidetic memory, and the talent to make us laugh so hard at ourselves that we could pee. Now applied to the greatest adventure in life: parenthood. Give yourself a treat and run over to Hugo House to catch the latest installment of Lauren's personal soap opera.

For more information, go to http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/103513 or call 1-800-838-3006.

Comments on reviews go to sgncritic@gmail.com.

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