REVIVAL OF A 1998 SACRED FOOLS ORIGINAL PRODUCTION!
bigger the star, the more tragic his fall.
The Swine Show
chronicles the life of the legendary Swine, a man who could live on beer and cigarettes alone.
He was perhaps the biggest star ever seen at the box office and on television, and this is his story.
From his humble beginnings with the Chicken Brothers Sideshow on Wheels through his training at the Upper Lip Performance Academy
(ULPA), his years of indentured servitude with the fabulously wealthy Mrs. Gouge, his subsequent rise to stardom followed by his tragic fall followed by his inspiring redemption, Swine consistently bent over backwards just to entertain.
This is his story. But we've already said that.
NOMINATED FOR FOUR L.A. WEEKLY AWARDS! Revival Production of the Year ~ Comedy Direction
(Paul Plunkett) Comedy
Ensemble ~ Sound Design (Tim Labor)
ENSEMBLE: Jaime Andrews,
Adam Bitterman, Rafeal Clements,
Supatra Hanna, Joe Hendrix, Rebecca Rhae Larsen,
Scott Leggett, Molly McDowell, Franci Montgomery,
Jaime Robledo, Ruth Silveira & Dan Wingard
Brendan Hunt as "Swine"
a bevy of Foolish Cameos!
Production & Set Design
Fight Choreographers/Suzuki Coaches
Fight & Dance Captain
Sound Operator Associate
Joe Fria & Michael Franco
Rebecca Rhae Larsen
Henry Dittman & Joe Seely
Lisa Anne Nicolai
TIMES (Critic's Choice!)
Real pearl among 'Swine' Sacred Fools' jewel 'The Swine Show' makes twisted comic fodder of celebrity culture.
A nation in which the public lives to be shocked and an inbred masochist can become the biggest star in history supplies the twisted crux of "The Swine Show." In its hilariously trenchant revival at Sacred Fools, writer-director Paul Plunkett's unswerving satire on our culture of celebrity is deliriously wrong and exactly right.
Written in 1995, "Swine" was part of Sacred Fools' inaugural 1997-98 season. Today its sardonic point seems terribly prescient. Plunkett goes for the black comic jugular, aping the lofty stance of countless docudramas, complete with jovial narrator (Adam Bitterman).
Born to siblings from somewhere beyond Tobacco Road, hapless Swine (the memorable Brendan Hunt) has one talent: to absorb abuse. This dubious ability takes him from the Chicken Brothers Sideshow on Wheels to global superstardom and back, broken but game at the synoptic finale.
Interspersed throughout are interviews with various Swine-witnesses, such as brother Goat (Joe Hendrix) and sister Cow (Franci Montgomery), lawyer Stubby Scarborough (Rafeal Clements) and epically clueless Dr. Jane Hunkle (Ruth Silveira).
Plunkett's adroit staging brings his subversive travesty to unsettling life amid the spare scrims and panels of production designer Michael Franco. These form a nightmare palette for Andy Dobson's black-white-and-pink costumes, Cricket Sloat's eerie lighting, Tim Labor's snide sound and the wicked songs by Plunkett and composer Richard Levinson.
Hunt, whose physical and facial eloquence should make Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert very nervous, is a revelation as Swine. The terrific ensemble circles him like vultures on acid, playing dozens of roles with rapt versatility.
Scott Leggett's sausage-wielding Momma, Donna Giffen's wealthy gargoyle and Supatra Hanna's commercial sponsor are perhaps the most outrageous turns, but everyone is an unhinged hoot. Their inspired dementia propels this virtual "E! True Hollywood Story" gone Dada.
Writer-director Paul Plunkett’s blacker-than-pitch comedy is a ruthless, riotous indictment of a celebrity culture that feeds on shock. Penned 12 years before Britney shaved her head — even before
E! True Hollywood Stories debuted — this prescient satire (with Richard Levinson’s original music, lyrics by Plunkett) shaped as a docudrama follows the entertainment career of Swine (a deliriously go-for-broke Brendan Hunt) from the farm, where his inbred siblings Goat and Cow (Joe Hendrix and Franci Montgomery) tortured him for giggles, to the top of the food chain in Hollywood, where his every black eye is luridly detailed in the tabloids. While his various abusers take credit for Swine’s fame, his therapist (Ruth Silveira) wonders if his tortured background — maybe, say, when his mom (Scott Leggett) fed him dog food for a buck, or that time he was gang-raped by gorillas — might have been what molded him into the ultimate superstar beast with a hunger to please.
Swine’s crowd-pleasing ditties (music by Richard Levinson with lyrics by Plunkett) mash up bestiality jokes with patriotism. Plunkett’s direction and ensemble are sharp and smart; and though we may laugh as Swine turns a Taser on himself for applause, we also feel a small piece of our soul die.