Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Features and More

Review: 'Dixie's Tupperware Party' serves up humor on a platter

Straight from a Mobile, Ala., trailer park and dressed like a truckstop diner waitress, drag queen Dixie Longate hosts the funniest Tupperware party you will ever attend. Wrapped in a nearly two-hour sales pitch of sex, stereotypes and comedy, Dixie's Tupperware Party, currently showing at the Straz Center's Jaeb Theater through Sunday, features Longate, the alter-ego of Kris Andersson, in an air-tight theatrical performance that also serves as a real Tupperware party.

Behind her trademark fire engine red hair and rapid cadence infused with a Southern accent, lies perhaps the most clever and entertaining Tupperware lady since the plastic storage container's inception in 1946. From the Rectangular Cake Taker (good for cakes, cupcakes and Jell-O shots), to the spill proof Tupperware Tumbler with Drip-Less Straw Seal she toted filled with red wine, to the Square Pick-A-Deli Container that comes with its own weapon — Dixie will make you want what she's selling.

The show is mostly scripted, but that doesn't impede Dixie's witty improv with audience antics. Anyone seated near the stage, especially men, were lured into Dixie's shenanigans. On Tuesday night, Dixie singled out Aaron, a man in the front row, whom she repeatedly picked on and eventually asked on stage to demonstrate a Tupperware can opener. When flustered with the tricky dynamics of the can opener and a hooting audience, Aaron said ,"This is women's work." To which Dixie quickly whipped, "Good thing, because if it was man's work, you'd obviously starve." Aaron got to keep the can, but he won't ever forget how to use that can opener.

Dixie's backstory goes something like this: She's a single mom of three who began selling Tupperware in 2001 after being released from jail and told to get a job by her parole officer in order to get her kids back. The officer gifted her a fake crystal Tupperware bowl, which became the iconic centerpiece for her journey to becoming America's No. 1 Personal Seller of Tupperware. In 2007, she took her unique party on tour and hasn't looked back.

Her journey, at times, pays homage to Brownie Wise, the pioneer (and Dixie's seeming idol) of the Tupperware brand's success in the post-WWII era. Like the motivational moment Dixie had when she delivered an inspirational message (stemming from Wise) about the ripple effect, and how one decision can change a life and make a difference.

That sentiment soon shrunk, just like her Flat Out collapsible bowls, when she orchestrated a ball toss and lid rimming competition (oh, the innuendos) between four women as her grand finale.

As she offers life lessons and outrageous alternative-use suggestions for Tupperware, Dixie sticks to her boisterous character. Some of the risque material might make you blush, but you will definitely laugh. And, no pressure, you don't have to buy anything — though don't be surprised if you do.

Stephanie Bolling can be reached at [email protected] or (813) 226-3408.

Comments
Jobsite’s ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ should be more gripping than it is

Jobsite’s ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ should be more gripping than it is

TAMPA — The virtues of Dancing at Lughnasa, with which Jobsite Theater closes its season, are many. This drama by the celebrated Brian Friel opened in 1990 to much acclaim. It captures a family’s joys and sadnesses, and the quickness with which one s...
Published: 06/19/18
A perfect pick for dessert

A perfect pick for dessert

America’s Test KitchenIt might seem impossible to improve on a perfect peach, but we decided to try. We wanted a simple, warm dessert that amplified the peaches’ flavor. To achieve tender, flavorful peaches with a lightly sweet glaze, we began by tos...
Published: 06/19/18
Restaurant review: Chile Verde is serving up very solid tacos in an unlikely spot

Restaurant review: Chile Verde is serving up very solid tacos in an unlikely spot

ST. PETERSBURGThere are a lot of decommissioned gas stations across the country. Some have been reinvented, cleverly made over as upscale restaurants. There’s Big Star in Chicago, Elaia & Olio in St. Louis, Red Truck Bakery in Warrenton, Va., even Bi...
Published: 06/18/18
Taste test: Chocolate chip cookies

Taste test: Chocolate chip cookies

When we started seeing ads for Nestle Toll House cookies already baked and prepackaged, I knew it was time for our tasters to get involved. They are cookie lovers, and one even has his own cookiemaking business. We found the Nestle brand and had hope...
Published: 06/18/18
Irish boxer brings his dream to St. Petersburg

Irish boxer brings his dream to St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG — In his vision for this weekend, Connor Coyle is standing in the ring at the Coliseum, and the referee is raising his gloved fist.He’s got a National Boxing Association middleweight championship belt around his waist, the first of sev...
Published: 06/15/18
With over 40 years between the birth of my two daughters, I am two different fathers

With over 40 years between the birth of my two daughters, I am two different fathers

Still shaken by Bobby Kennedy’s assassination six days earlier, I sat in the hospital waiting room mindlessly thumbing through a May 1968 Rolling Stone while my wife, Fran, gave birth to our daughter Elle. As was customary, when everyone had been fre...
Published: 06/15/18
Puerto Vallarta is a dreamy Mexican getaway within reach

Puerto Vallarta is a dreamy Mexican getaway within reach

LOREN ELLIOTT • Times CorrespondentPUERTO VALLARTA, MEXICOThe third-floor balcony attached to our rented apartment served as a peaceful refuge above Puerto Vallarta’s bustling central district streets. Below us, taxis honked, people crowded bus ...
Published: 06/15/18
How Tampa's Cole and Marmalade got famous, beat cancer and helped save more cats

How Tampa's Cole and Marmalade got famous, beat cancer and helped save more cats

Here's how to make your cat famous on the internet, according to the owners of some famous felines.
Published: 06/15/18
Irish boxer brings his dream to St. Petersburg

Irish boxer brings his dream to St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG — In his vision for this weekend, Connor Coyle is standing in the ring at the Coliseum, and the referee is raising his gloved fist.He’s got a National Boxing Association middleweight championship belt around his waist, the first of sev...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/16/18
High-tech nighttime lagoon show coming to Universal Orlando this summer

High-tech nighttime lagoon show coming to Universal Orlando this summer

A gliding, wraith-like figure of a Dementor from the Harry Potter films enters Central Park, and the exteriors of the surrounding buildings immediately are covered in a layer of ice, a sign of their power to drain happiness out of the air around them...
Published: 06/14/18