Kris Andersson as Dixie Longate
in Dixie's Tupperware Party
(© Carol Rosegg)
Kris Andersson as Dixie Longate
in Dixie's Tupperware Party
(© Carol Rosegg)
Who knew you could have so much fun at a Tupperware party? For those who have never experienced this archetypical American event -- and even for those who have -- Dixie's Tupperware Party is a night to remember.

The show is hosted by Dixie Longate, the drag creation of writer/performer Kris Andersson. After a successful run at the 2004 New York International Fringe Festival, Andersson teamed with playwright Elizabeth Meriwether and director Alex Timbers to create the interactive comedy's current incarnation at Ars Nova.

The structure of the show is simple; Dixie holds a Tupperware party. She displays numerous products, demonstrating their varied uses (many of which are probably not officially sanctioned by the manufacturer). She also regales the audience with stories about her life (including exhorting the audience to buy her products to save her crippled son, Dwayne), shares some of the history of Tupperware parties, and answers questions from the audience.

There's not much of a dramatic arc, and the script is rather corny, but Dixie knows how to sell it -- along with the Tupperware products which you can actually purchase at the performance. Dixie bubbles over with charm and energy, and has a quick wit that makes the most of her improvised exchanges with various audience members. Her facial expressions are priceless and likely to have you rolling with laughter.

The show is decidedly geared towards adults and contains copious amounts of sexual innuendo. For example, Dixie describes a set of tumblers as "ribbed for your pleasure" and holds an onstage rimming contest -- using Tupperware products, of course. There are also several jokes relating to alcohol -- and, appropriately, the Ars Nova bar remains open throughout the proceedings.

If you're afraid of audience interaction, this may not be the show for you. Dixie is liable to drag just about anyone onto the stage with her, and the success of the show could very well depend on the gameness of the "volunteers." The night I attended, the motley assortment of participants -- including a London theater critic, a group of tourists from Wisconsin, and several New Yorkers -- were very good sports.

Cameron Anderson's brightly colored set, with its campy kitchen décor, is the perfect backdrop for Dixie's party. The other designers -- Camille Assif (costumes), Jeff Croiter (lighting), Jake Pinholster (video), and Eric Shim (sound) -- also do terrific work, adding to the ambiance of the proceedings. But it's Andersson's hilarious performance as Dixie that makes the show as a whole worth attending.