A Chanukah Charol
Jackie Hoffman's new show humorously examines her quest for nationwide fame.
In this 50-minute variation on Charles Dickens' classic holiday tale, co-written and directed by her frequent collaborator Michael Schiarilli, Hoffman takes a decidedly humorous if surprisingly hard look at her self-described identity as a "self-loathing Jew" and her quest for the kind of nationwide fame that has so far eluded her.
Nowhere are these themes more hilariously explored than when she is visited by the Ghost of Chanukah Yet to Be and discovers her "future" as star of a particularly repugnant reality show called Ugly Jew. (The details are even worse than you might imagine).
In keeping with the Dickens tale, she is visited by a variety of spirits -- including the famed Yiddish actress Molly Picon -- and she also throws in a reference to "Tiny Tim," here reimagined as "Tiny Kim," the deformed Korean boy who delivers Pinkberry regularly to her apartment, and whom Hoffman refuses to tip until she learns the errors of her ways.
Audiences expecting the same kind of solo show that Hoffman has presented in past years at Joe's Pub are in for a surprise; there are no original songs, considerably less profanity, and far fewer scorching remarks than usual. That said, one could hardly term the show "family-friendly."