So what’s a country girl to do, besides keep her pits deodorized and her bush debugged? Here’s an ironic play title. Brothers’ Harvest, Matthew Posey’s latest original offering at The Ochre House, plumbs the raw, dark vaginal depths of visceral, unleashed female psyche, awash with the PMS-laden scent of a proto/fem lib crudite plate. Just add some plump raw oysters to that crunchy veggie platter, something to sink the teeth into with savage womanly vengeance. Delusions and expectations — expectations and delusions: when it comes down to mixing it up between guys and gals, Brothers’ Harvest lays it out plain and simple with plenty of salty language smashing the yin hard up against the yang. Add a king-sized dose of racist banter to boot, politically correct be damned all to Hell, you Lousy Meskins. Nobody much comes out smelling like gardenias in this one-act, except for the audience, which winces and laughs all the way through this rough hewn Birthing Canal and emerges grinning, wiser, or maybe at least cheerier, mostly, for the experience. Posey knows his gals as well as he knows his guys. Lordy. Like Woody Allen gone backwoods native.
The gals in question? That would be Cassie Bann as plucky protagonista Indigo Sue, Carla Parker flashing a scintillating gold tooth, a timeless fashion statement, as Rae Rae, curvy Marti Etheridge as squeaky Barbara Ann, sultry Elizabeth Evans as lascivious Lamma Lou and elegant Danielle Bondurant as sad, abused Dale (always one in every crowd of three or four) – well, they are all pretty fed up with the less than charming crop of arrogant, entitled, narcissistic, disrespectful, generally unkempt and unwashed men cluttering up their lives and boudoirs. But they don’t seem to have a plan for escaping them, bitch as loud about them as they might.
And the gents, using that term loosely, as in screw-loose: Mitchell Parrack as tyrannical abuser Hank, Kevin Grammer as pompous fop Officer Chiffon (yes, they let him carry a gun), pristine Christian Taylor in all-out amazing dramatic display as the seediest, most inelegant boorish lout of the lot Sasso, and scrungy to the max Chris Sykes as Indigo Sue’s “partner” Boomer and “dog pack” spokesman, whose loose mouth leads him down linguistic pathways nobody this side of a baboon should ever traverse. They may all be stinky, stupid, ornery and rotten, but they got those there gals all bamboozled. Hyuck, hyuck. Gimme some more cheese tater tots and a Shiner, hey?
Enter conflict in the dual personas of Mexican big rig drivers Enrique and Karlo. Smooth-talking, romance-promising, with dazzling, exotic good looks, Ivan Jasso and Dante Martinez upset the apple cart before the yearly 17 mile drag race takes place (plot is minor to the proceedings but does exist) and draw the frustrated, ape-shit horny ladies to themselves like flies to a bloody carcass. The guileless white guys twist themselves into testosterone-riddled, xenophobic knots. Ultimately, Hispanic names and exotic looks aside, they are just differently hued versions of the white guys, in reality, right? The white louts try to outsmart the Hispanics (good luck, pendejos); Indigo Sue, initially swooning over Enrique, wises up to his particular line of BS; and there’s a relatively happy ending with a fem lib partnership forged, one that scores brownie points on the Karma scale for playwright Posey.
So, why go? It’s funny as Hell, particularly the first 10 minutes or so of relentless vulgarities streaming out of the gals’ mouths like unchecked endometriosis. The country-ish musical interludes, provided by Musical Director/composer Earl Norman on accordion and guitar, along with percussion, xylophone, bass and guitar by Trey Pendergrass, Bobby Fajardo, Jeff Kennedy and Deanna Valone always add a special energized lilt to any Ochre House production. Then the mindless malapropisms and total invented stupid shit that clueless Boomer spouts, delivered with perfectly inept timing by Chris Sykes, should warm the heart cockles of even the most jaundiced female audience member in the house. Yeah, men can be real assholes. Is that the point? I don’t know. Sure fun to watch in living stage color with cool music. Kinda sad, too. They’re not all like that, not all the time….
Last weekend for all the ruckus! Runs Feb. 17 through Feb. 20 at 8:15pm. Tickets $17 https://web.ovationtix.com/trs/cal/34587
BROTHERS’ HARVEST IS INTENDED FOR MATURE AUDIENCES ONLY (adult language and situations). Due to the respect and nature of live performance, we are not able to offer late seating. Please arrive on time to ensure a seat. Reserved seats are subject to be released at 8:15. Thank you for your patronage and your understanding.