Parody Offers Crash Course in ‘Sex and the City’

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Kerry Ipema stars in “One Woman Sex and the City,” coming to the Broward Center, April 14 – 15. Credit: Greg Gallagher.

Have you ever dated one of those guys who could quote entire episodes of “The Golden Girls” or “Absolutely Fabulous” verbatim? It can be humorous and endearing or sometimes annoying and agonizing. If your guy is a fan of “Sex and the City,” there’s a way to quickly get up to speed on the hit series.

“One Woman Sex and the City” is coming to the Broward Center in Fort Lauderdale. In just 90 minutes, the uninitiated can catch up on seven seasons of romantic exploits and sexual escapades from Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte and Samantha.

The show is the creation of Canadian playwright and director T. J. Dawe. The 44-year-old, creator of “The One Man Star Wars Trilogy,” “The One Man Lord of the Rings,” and a number of other solo plays, found himself in such a situation several years ago when a girlfriend introduced him the four fancy free ladies at the center of the HBO series.

“At the time, I was very anti-TV and had never seen it,” recalled Dawe. “I quickly recognized the brilliance of the writing, the modern fairy tale.”

He teamed up with New York-based actress Kerry Ipema and “One Woman Sex and the City” was born.

“I started watching it again, culling through my memories for the pivotal scenes, characters and moments that I remembered,” Dawe said. “It took me a little over a year, it was a big challenge.”

For his “Star Wars” parody, Dawe only had to condense six hours and the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy ran about 10 hours.

“I had to squeeze 48 hours into 90 minutes,” he added, “and it was a challenge.”

Word count became a valuable tool as he sought to condense the scenarios and relationships. Ipema threw in her input and a joke writer was consulted to ensure the experience offered some fresh material for those fans who knew the episodes inside and out. He likened the group process to working on the writing staff of a weekly television sitcom.

The success of “One Woman Sex and the City” also relies on Ipema’s acting and improvisational skills.

“When we’re creating a show, each of us has our own ideas, talents and energies and a one-person show is best when it’s tailor made to what that (actor) brings to the table,” Dawe explained.

The show premiered at a theater festival in Winnipeg last July and has since been performed in “a lot of red states,” as Dawe put it, including venues in Louisville, Ky., Fargo, N.D. and Omaha, Neb.

Dawe hasn’t had many predominantly gay audiences yet, but that may change when the show pulls into Fort Lauderdale, with its exceptionally large LGBTQ community.

“Up to now, our audience seems to be mostly groups of heterosexual women, like the four main characters in the show,” said Dawe. “There may be some gay men, but very few straight men. If straight men had brains, they’d come to this show to find out what they want from the abundance of single women.”

“One Woman Sex and the City” plays at the Broward Center’s Abdo New River Room in Fort Lauderdale, April 14 – 15. Tickets start at $35 at BrowardCenter.org.


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