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Care to Drink in Some Theater?

claireChris Caporlingua The characters quaffed beer in “Claire Went to
France.” Now you can, too.

Having trouble getting the boyf to take in some local theater? This might convince him. “The Vitology,” a new three-act comedy from Ben Clawson, Artome Yatsunov, and Scott Cagney – playwright, director, and actor from “Claire Went to France” – involves a drinking game: audience members pick a character and every time the character drinks, they drink, too. The play, which runs July 5 to 14 at Under St. Marks, spans “a decade in the lives of the world’s worst best friends,” per a press release, so expect to take many a sip from the free beer you get with the $18 cost of admission.

And the Strange Dog Theatre Company isn’t the only one plying theatergoers with drinks. Bowery Boogie attended “Speakeasy Dollhouse,” Cynthia von Buhler’s new play about the murder of her saloonkeeper grandfather and found that upon arriving at the former Lower East Side speakeasy where the play takes place, audience members are offered cannolis and “special coffee.”

Go See ‘Claire Went to France’? Abso-arfin-lutely!

claireChris Caporlingua Aliee Chan (l) as the Real Girl, Scott Cagney (c)
as the Dog, and Tony K. Knotts (r) as Johnathon.

“Well. At least I can always kill myself,” says Johnathon, the everyman protagonist of “Claire Went to France,” at the beginning of Ben Clawson’s new play. His anthropomorphic dog ignores the comment and keeps watching TV, and his grandpa continues to play solitaire after complaining about “jokes about things that aren’t funny.”

Much of this play, which turns the cellar-like Under St. Mark’s into Johnathon’s living room and the prism through which we view his dreary life, is exactly that: Johnathon’s ex-girlfriend barrages him with spectacular insults from the closet, his dog tries to convince him to masturbate to waste time, and the grandpa, like some Judge of History, spews grand truths which contradict from moment to moment. Read more…