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Print Version

Boomers Behaving Badly
Written by & starring Jane Keller
with Michael Nicholas Williams on the Piano
Directed by KC Kelly

at St James Theatre 1st Floor Gallery, Wellington
28 May 2010
[1hr 30min, incl. interval]

Reviewed by Vicki Thorpe, 29 May 2010

Baby boomers – that is, those born between 1945 and 1960 – gathered last night to hear Jane Keller lampoon their generation in song and have a great time. They weren't disappointed. Keller's one-woman, cabaret-style show Boomers Behaving Badly presented songs of botox, grand children, well-endowed dentists, revenge porn, romantic weekends in Paris and high school reunions.

Keller has great voice for musical theatre, and she's so funny. It was a pleasure to be in the company of such assurance and experience. She used her powerful, operatic voice to good effect, at times poignant and at others risque. Keller's delivery of lyrics (including fluent spanglish and franglais) was impressive as she performed a string of complex, wordy songs with dramatic flair and intensity.

Carey McDonald on piano was with her all the way, although rather more subdued than I would have expected given Keller's gutsy performance.

The highlight for me was Keller's portrayal of a ‘jaguar', a 50 plus female baby boomer on the prowl for younger men. Her impromptu performance with one of the few young men in the audience could best be described as a friendly maul. Their brilliantly improvised comic timing had the audience roaring with laughter.

The St James turned on efficient and charming dinner service for the hungry and appreciative audience. The venue works well, notwithstanding the need for early arrivals to queue in single file as their tickets were scanned even more slowly than at an airline gateway on a busy day. 

It was a fun show and just the thing for a crowd of boomers on a wet cold night.

For more production details, click on the title above. Go to Home page to see other Reviews, recent Comments and Forum postings (under Chat Back), and News. 

See also reviews by:
 Ewen Coleman [Reproduced with permission of Fairfax Media] (The Dominion Post);
 Michael Wray
 Gail Pittaway


Wellshaw posted 29 May 2010, 07:39 PM / edited 30 May 2010, 12:00 AM

Woops - it was Jane Keller (not Helen, the deafblind American woman). We went to the preview - I'm sure she was talking about cougars (not jaguars) - but agree, very funny.

[My incredibly embarrasing failure to notice in editing - now fixed - ED]

John Smythe posted 29 May 2010, 10:51 PM

The word is that jaguars is Jane's word for 50+ cougars.