Early in the revival of "Klub" at the Actors’ Gang, a peroxide-blond actress with a balloon chest is told by her director that her nose looks crooked. She nonchalantly pulls a power drill from her tool kit, aims it at her face and performs her own rhinoplasty. After the messy operation, she turns to the audience with a gigantic smile as if to say, "Is that better?"
By turns gross and outlandish, without a subtle bone in its grotesque body, "Klub" (pronounced "kloob") is a demented satire about the acting profession that interbreeds "A Chorus Line," Jean-Paul Sartre and Little Orphan Annie into a gruesome comic monstrosity.
The play's penchant for tasteless overstatement is sure to repulse certain audience members. "Klub" is a farce that thrives on anarchy and carnivalesque excess. The lack of narrative discipline (and good stage manners) may seem callow at times, but it's a valid and even rigorous approach for a play that explores the existential absurdity of the stage actor's craft.
Written by Mitch Watson and first performed in 1992, "Klub" takes place in a big-top Hades where a louche clown (performed by the playwright) rules with a pistol and a cynical grimace. Every night, a group of bickering actors must compete for the right to leave Klub, each performing his act onstage for an unseen director who arbitrarily awards points.