Theater Caps are bite-sized punch-packing capsule reviews by resident theater critic Elaine Liner. Use them as a reminder -- or a teaser, if you procrastinate -- of her full-length reviews in The Mixmaster's weekly sister.
There is nothing on any local stage right now like Elvis August. Created and performed by Jack Foltyn, the show is part tribute to the King, part impersonation and a whole lotta crazy.
Performing on weekends through September 4 at the tiny Theatre 166 in northwest Carrollton (a space that's the Crosspointe Church when it's not hosting Branson-like entertainment), Foltyn changes it up at every show. This weekend it's "Elvis at the Movies." The following weekend it'll be "Elvis Live in Vegas." Then it's a weekend back at the movies again.
The show I saw could've been called "Elvis at the Sauna."
Backed up by a four-piece band and four girl dancers in skimpy outfits, Foltyn, clad in tight black leather pants, leather jacket and no shirt, hits the stage pre-sweatified. By the end of the first hour, he's shed the jacket and, while singing "Don't Be Cruel" and "Blue Suede Shoes," rids himself of rivers of perspiration by flicking it at the ladies on the front row of seats.
Let me describe Jack Foltyn's fans for you: Not young, not thin, not un-tattooed. Some have all their teeth; some only a few, mostly in front. The seams on their tube tops threaten to burst each time they scream for Foltyn to jump into the audience for a kiss or to gift them with more samples of his sweat-juices.
They're full of enthusiasm and gravy, happy to be seated in the splash zone.
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It's a scene and a half. Foltyn, who's a terrific singer and dancer, if a bit of a cheesemonger, works it. Boy, does he ever. (He sweats off about 10 pounds per show. I asked him.) After the show, Foltyn signs autographs and sells swag from a table in the lobby.
His groupies go home laden with "I (heart) Jack" pink T-shirts and posters. So far he's not selling vials of sweat. But it's probably on his to-do list.
Elvis August continues through September 4 at Theatre 166, 2425 Parker Road, Carrollton. For tickets, $15 to $20 (two for $12 on Sundays), call 214-663-1236 or go to jackfoltyn.com.