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On Stage

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The songs you know by heart and some unforgettable originals K RISTEN P AGE- K IRBY

If you go OY VEY IN A MANGER Theater J, 1529 16th St. NW. 202-518-9400. Dates: Through Dec. 28. Prices: $17-$47.

The Kinsey Sicks — a dragapella barbershop quartet — brings satire and subversive humor to Theater J with “Oy Vey in a Manger.”

“I had to radically rewrite [the show],” Schatz says. “Satire involves exaggerating a kernel of truth. How do you exaggerate what’s happening now? But I think, like Donald Trump, we have sunk to the occasion.” Schatz says the group attracts a diverse fan base — people who like a cappella music, people who like drag and people who like progressive, subversive humor. That said, all are welcome — and some people are even encouraged to see the show. “I very much doubt Mike Pence will attend,” Schatz says, “but I’ll pay him if he sits through the whole thing.”

DECEMBER 23, 2016


udiences “may not forgive seeing us,” Ben Schatz says. “But they won’t forget.” Schatz is a founding member and the self-described “grand poobah” of the Kinsey Sicks, a dragapella barbershop quartet that is staging its irreverent Christmas revue “Oy Vey in a Manger” at Theater J. In “Oy Vey,” the Kinsey Sicks

working full time on AIDS discrimination issues, and this was in the midst of the horrors of the AIDS epidemic,” he says. “I was on TV a lot and playing the earnest, respectful homosexual, but deep down I knew I was a bad girl.” That bad girl was Rachel, and she and her friends in the troupe were unleashed one late night after some revelry following a Bette Midler concert. Since then, Schatz and the gang have performed across the country. (Winnie, Trixie and Trampolina round out the current lineup.) Even with all of that experience, performing in Washington post-election — especially post-this-election — is something entirely new.



have been living in the Bethlehem spot of Jesus’ birth for “about 2,016 years,” Schatz says. Now the property is being foreclosed upon, so the quartet must sell the manger. The show, Schatz says, “involves reminiscences of the day and has unforgettable and unforgivable parodies of classic holiday songs, both for Christmas and Hanukkah, and some original songs.” (“God Bless Ye Femmy Lesbians” and “I’m Dreaming of a Vanna White Christmas” are among them.) The Kinsey Sicks came to be in 1993, when Schatz needed a break from his job as executive director of a national gay health organization. “I was the first attorney


The perfect vamp for every occasion

The washington post december 23 2016  
The washington post december 23 2016