Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Ian Harvie Show

Monday night I went out to Largo at the Coronet Theatre in West Hollywood to catch the Ian Harvie Show. This monthly happening is a variety show with stand-up comedy, musical performances and interview segments.

This intimate venue is great for working on new material, which is just what Ian did. Much of his stand-up comedy deals with his experiences being transgender. You couldn't make something like that up just for the sake of schtick!

Pleasant Gehman, aka Princess Farhana, made the transition from bellydancing goddess to storytelling comic. Her friendly persona and natural stage presence drew the audience in. Pleasant took us on a journey from shoplifting to her sexual fantasy involving Michael Phelps and his eight gold medals. And honestly, I don't think anyone has made bulimia funnier!

Ian then returned to interview the cast of The Cho Show. John Stapleton, John Blaine, Selene Luna and Charlie Altuna recounted tales of growing up, working in Hollywood, and joining Margaret Cho for zany antics on her VH1 show. These folks are all friends, which gave the chat an easy familiarity. They had no problem getting up in each other's business and sharing with the audience.

Finally, gay rapper Lisp took the stage, throwing rhymes about "shaving your juevos," after which he was joined by thugged-out honeys Selene and Pleasant.

Afterwards, I met Ian Harvie, who genuinely thanked me for coming out to the show. Ian is someone who loves what he does, and his sincerity and kindness are truly remarkable. The Live Nude Girls sign behind us was not for his show, but could certainly apply to The Sensuous Woman, in which Ian appeared with Margaret, Selene and friends.

I chatted up Pleasant, who was sweet as pie, just as her name suggests. (Heaven forbid she have an off day!) Of course the Olympic medal she's sporting in our picture relates to her Michael Phelps fantasy.

The effervescent Selene was awesome as always! (Note the Bill Clinton pendant.) She told us she was on the hunt for an indoor voice. You know Selene's near before you even see her, because her endearing voice really carries and is instantly recognizable.

All in all, it was a great night. This family of performers really fosters creativity in each other, and it was exciting to share the evening with them. Previous segments, including a chat with Margaret, can be seen on Ian Harvie's website, and Monday night's show should be uploaded soon!


keri said...

Live! Nude! Girls! Girls! Girls!


It was great to see you again!

Ian Harvie said...

Blake, it was a pleasure meeting you. Thank you for the incredibly sweet write-up on the show and making the long drive to come see it. I was glad you were there. XX - Ian