TR Robertson — San Diego Repertory’s Mission Statement says they are to “produce intimate, provocative, inclusive theatre. We promote an interconnected community through vivid works that nourish progressive political and social values and celebrate the multiple voices of our region.” Were those multiple voices ever heard and political and social values questioned and celebrated with the outrageously funny, biting and satirical all female performance by members of the famous Chicago Second City comedic/theatrical production of “She the People”, on Saturday evening, at the San Diego Repertory Theatre.
Since 1959, Second City has been the home and the beginning for some of the comedy giants of all time, from Joan Rivers to Gilda Radner to John Belushi to Tina Fey and on and on. The “She the People” touring group presented a variety of comedic original musical numbers and routines as well as comedy sketches touching on numerous serious and not-so-serious social and political issues.
The evenings cast included Carisa Berreca – Associate Director and choreographer and an Alumna of The Second City Resident Stage; Laurel Zoff Pelton who has performed in other Second City productions; Yazmin Ramos – veteran of “She the People” tours; Kazi Jones – performing in previous award winning runs of “She the People”; Katie Caussin – performing with Second City since the 90’s and a veteran of their National Touring company; and Kennedy Baldwin – a Second City regular who began in 2016 with their improv classes.
These six women had perfect timing, great chemistry and obviously love what they are doing. The numerous scenes on stage moved quickly from one sketch to another and kept the audience continually laughing. Depending on the topic, the comedy was biting at times, a little dark at other times and covered numerous subjects and topics women have fought for and against for years, all while both making fun of the topics they covered as well as dealing a message that change is certainly needed.
Some of the subjects included in the performance were body image, mother-daughter relationships, gender identity, stereotyping, the questionable women’s roles shown in television commercials, gun fascination, sexual double standards, gender and racial discrimination, and much more. Several examples of the sketches were the opening sketch of three friends playing a board game called Privilege where the white woman always won and a sketch where Associate Director Carisa Berreca came on stage in a large T-Rex costume pointing out that it’s not what she’s wearing that people, men, should be looking at, but what she’s saying.
Throughout the two-hour show, the performers mixed the sketches with songs, short dance routines, rap, and audience participation. The game show in the second half of the performance featured a female audience member in a hilarious question and answer competition. The standing ovation at the end of the show clearly showed the appreciation the audience had with both the performance on stage and the messages delivered through comedy by a talented group of performers.
“She the People” is created and directed by Carly Heffernan – Creative Director and Alumna of The Second City Toronto. Lighting Designer Abby Beggs, Sound Designer and Music Director Elise Wattman, and Stage Manager William Collins.
“She the People” will be on the SD Rep Lyceum Theatre Stage until December 5th. Tickets are available at 619-544-1000 or go to www.sdrep.org.