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Remember the old adage about making a silk purse out of a sow's ear? The UCF Conservatory Theatre's 6 Women With Brain Death tries to fashion luxurious silk stockings out of an old, stretched-out pair of support hose … and gets pretty close at times. A musical revue that sees a sextet of pissed-off ladies weathering the onslaught of trash-culture overload, the show was stitched together by composer Mark Houston and a phalanx of seven (!) collaborators – none of whom has contributed a satirical idea pithier than you'd get from Shoebox Greetings. Whatever pizzazz this thing possesses is strictly down to performance: Director David Lee draws admirably consistent ensemble work from actresses of wildly varying ages and experience levels (adults Lynne Locher, Janine Klein and Natalie Kuritzky elevate the three student players without overshadowing them), while Vandy Wood's set and lighting designs hit just the right note of game-show surrealism. Strong voices and deft comic timing make the pseudofeminist hectoring endurable, and there's even some surprisingly effective puppetry. Not of the penis, thank God – that'd be taking housewife desperation too far. (

6 Women With Brain Death
Tupperware Theatre, Orlando Repertory Theatre
Through July 10


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