The Show Formerly Known as Purple Rain Late Night Theatre
Even our culture's most gifted founts of outrageous pop fun sometimes flag. It happened to His Royal Badness, whose shows veer these days between greatest-hits coasting and smooth-jazz nightmares. The humdrum even hit Late Night Theatre back in the spring, when its parody of Prince's lone half-decent movie was nowhere near as funny as the film itself. Thank Lake Minnetonka, then, for Corrie Van Ausdal. Her comic specialty is to play, simultaneously, supreme confidence and utter incomprehension; in her hands, Apollonia -- the real-life hoochie more vacant than Metcalf South Mall -- was a dizzy combination of Minnesota dingbat and Margaret Dumont. Playing every joke straight sharpened the good ones and salvaged the duds, and unlike the rest of the cast, she never broke character, not even when the Purple Sex Dwarf slapped her again and again and again. Best of all, Late Night kingpin Ron Megee soon gave her The Bad Seedling, a real play and a real character keyed perfectly to her gifts.