Order champagne! Pop the cork! Celebrate the genius and gayness of Mr. Leslie Jordan in his autobiographical solo show “My Trip Down The Pink Carpet” at the newly refurbished cabaret space at the Midtown Theater on West 46 Street. And if the champagne doesn’t create sparkle enough for you, the stories that Mr. Jordan tells will. He is a master raconteur. He is adorable. He is “the gayest man he knows” and that is saying a mouthful.
Entering through a revolving door dressed in a tuxedo, looking very much like a dapper leprechaun he launches into the highs and lows of his very gay existence which started in Chattanooga Tennessee where he went from the womb of his mother right into her high heel shoes. Now that is the only line I will quote directly as there are hundreds more that will keep you laughing throughout his ninety minutes on stage. I do believe that he has enough stories to change the show every evening but you’ll be more than content seeing this diminutive bundle of energy cavort, prance, sashay, pose provocatively, mince and play butch as he shares his secrets about his once secret gay life that is no secret anymore.
Famous names abound as he journeys to Hollywood. The stories of his crushes on the likes of George Clooney and Mark Harmon are delicious. Lip smacking, hysterical vignettes are revealed side by side with the darker aspects of pills and poppers in a life that has seen much success particularly on “Will and Grace” where he became the master of stealing scenes from Megan Mullally. The description of his audition is priceless as is his chat with a pervert on the phone.
Deciding early on that he had to meet some queers he got up enough courage to enter a gay bar where he was fascinated and deeply repulsed. But in a life defining moment he discovered he was not alone and that it was all right to accept the fact that he was what he was – “an overt sissy by nature.” It takes a real man to be so courageous and honest and open in disclosing such frank information in such a delightful and engaging way.
If you are gay you will connect immediately and understand and if you are not gay you will gain some understanding of what is means being gay. Having to grapple with who you are, accepting yourself and finally finding happiness.
Crisp direction by David Galligan makes “My Trip Down the Pink Carpet” a journey very much worth taking with Leslie Jordan supplying plenty of effervescence and some surprisingly moving, heartfelt human comedy. A 12-week limited engagement.