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Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Bridget Everett Is a Face-Sitting, Dildo-Wielding, Alt-Cabaret Provocateur

Posted By on Wed, Mar 4, 2015 at 4:01 AM

Page 4 of 4

You know how when it's been so long since you've been touched with any kind of human tenderness," Everett asks from the stage near the end of a Rock Bottom dress rehearsal, "and you go to a salon to get your hair cut, and the shampoo girl puts you in the chair, and she starts running the water and she asks you if the temperature's OK, and when she puts her fingers in your hair you start crying?"

Everett approaches a strapping twenty-year-old in the third row of tables. "Will you dance with me?" They sway in the mottled glimmer of a circling mirror ball as she sings "Why Don't You Kiss Me?" a straightforward doo-wop alternative for those wary of, say, the more imperative-minded audience sing-along "Put Your Dick Away."

At the song's lulling bridge, Everett leads her dance partner by the hand onto the stage. In the audience, Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman sway in their seats. Neal Medlyn and Murray Hill wave their arms back and forth to the music.

Everett lays the man supine on the ground and lifts his feet waist-high. Grasping his hands in hers, she hoists herself onto his legs until she's hovering parallel above him. The crowd cheers. As she sinks back down, Everett wiggles forward onto the man's chest. The song's final notes dissipate with her sitting, as she often does, on her participant's face.

Everett pants from the physical exertion and invites a round of applause for her dancer/hoister as he exits. When the audience quiets down, she pauses. "So LL Cool J was saying to me, 'Bridget, DDHD — Dreams Don't Have Deadlines.' Or maybe he was telling it to Oprah. He was on her TV show, so I guess he was telling it to everybody. Well..."

She takes a deep, steadying breath. "Today I did something special that I thought I would never do. I always kept a partial job — I called it my 'slave job' — and I quit today." The room explodes, collaborators, friends, fans and new converts all jumping to their feet.

Everett tries to continue, but the noise drowns her out. Her brow scrunches and lips twitch. As tears well up, she grins apologetically and wipes them away.

"It seems like such a weird thing to cry about." Her voice, thick and dewy, catches. "I've been working in restaurants since I was fifteen...and I'm making better money now, and, well...I wanted to take a chance on myself." Still standing, her audience mirrors Everett's tilting loss of composure.

"I know this is a roomful of dreamers, and we're all just waiting for cabaret to catch fire." A knowing, rueful laughter spikes.

"Joe's Pub has given me a home. They've never told me no...well, the only thing they ever said was, 'Don't sit on the piano, 'cause it's new.' But other than that..."

Everett clenches her jaw, gathers herself and takes another cleansing breath. "I just want to sing this as a thank-you. DDHD! Hit the track!"

She belts out rousing closer "I'll Take You Home." Addictively striking in both tune and content, it's an anthem proving that with a firm backing pulse and harmonious support, it's possible to continue climbing indefinitely.

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