The Irish have always been the great explorers of the English language — Exhibit A being the word-drunk works of James Joyce — and Disco Pigs is firmly in the tradition. Enda Walsh's play is a twisted love story about a pair of 17-year-olds nicknamed Pig and Runt, who communicate in a private, almost psychic, working-class argot all their own.
Here they are at a disco, talking about their future:
"Wadda we wanna be, Pig?''
"Leff alone. Righ pal!''
"Righ, Pig. Mu zack up!''
The dialogue of Disco Pigs is far from the language of the heart, and it's incomprehensible more often than not, but somehow Pig and Runt come scarily to life in performances by Nic Carter and Dahlia Legault in the two-actor play, directed by Megan Lamasney at Silver Meteor Gallery.
Legault, striking in a taffeta bubble dress and combat boots (costume design is by Mike Buck), her short dark hair streaked with red, is a punkish beauty, all primal screams and high-strung physical energy. Runt is dissatisfied with her lot in a provincial backwater, but she'll probably find a way out. "Fashion my life,'' she says, and you can imagine her in a magazine spread on hip young designers.
Carter's Pig is another matter. He can be a charmer, and his description of making love with Runt is a lushly expressive monologue on sexuality, but he seethes with pent up violence. He also is deeply codependent on Runt, and as she gives signs of slipping away from him, disaster happens.
Walsh's play is reminiscent of other angry rants, from the thuggish droogs of Clockwork Orange to the anarchistic rock of Johnny Rotten and the Sex Pistols. The Silver Meteor's scruffiness serves such a rough and ready production well, though I don't think I'll ever get used to the door on stage left that leads right onto the deck and the restrooms. The scenic design by Kathy Buck features pages from children's books pasted to the wall.
Disco Pigs runs through March 20 at Silver Meteor Gallery, 2213 E Sixth Ave., Tampa. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday (no show this Saturday) and 3 p,m. Sunday. $12, $15. (813) 300-3585.
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My Fair Lady, directed by Tony Award winner Frank Galati, opens the 2011-12 season Nov. 18-Dec. 23 at the Asolo Repertory Theatre in Sarasota. The schedule, released this week, includes Once in a Lifetime by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman, Jan. 6-April 1; God of Carnage by Yasmina Reza, Jan. 13-Feb. 29; Yentl by Leah Napolin and Isaac Bashevis Singer, Jan. 20-April 26; Fallen Angels by Noel Coward, March 9-13; Hamlet, Prince of Cuba, adapted by Michael Donald Edwards with Spanish translation by Eduardo Machado, March 23-May 6; and Who the *$&% Is Jackson Pollock? by Liz Brixius, March 30-April 22. Also on the schedule is a musical on Broadway song and dance being developed by Noah Racey, Tommy Tune and Jeff Calhoun, Tommy Tune Presents: State of the Art Song and Dance, May 25-June 17. (941) 351-8000 or toll free 1-800-361-8388; asolorep.org.
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Rachel Potter, a Seminole High School grad and Miss Seminole 2005, is making her Broadway debut this week in The Addams Family, the musical starring Bebe Neuwirth. Potter, who graduated from the University of Central Florida, had been in the national tour of Wicked. Locally, she played Sally in freeFall Theatre's The Wild Party in 2008. She plays Wednesday Addams in The Addams Family.
John Fleming can be reached at email@example.com or (727) 893-8716.