The creators of “Boylesque” didn’t even have to see the source material for their parody of current box office fave “Burlesque,” starring Christina Aguileira and Cher, before they started writing a drag version of the original.
“When we were re-writing it, we discovered that the original was just so campy,” says Mimi Imfurst, who plays a Cher impersonator in “Boylesque.” “It’s one part ‘Showgirls,’ one part ‘Chicago,’ one part ‘Fame’ — so we were able to pull in all these elements. I’m suspecting that this movie is going to be a cult classic for a really long time.”
“Boylesque,” which debuted before “Burlesque” even hit theaters, strips away the original’s more-glamorous trappings by moving the story from some swank L.A. burlesque lounge to a divey drag bar in Akron, Ohio, that’s run by Imfurst’s Cher impersonator.
“Given the state of the economy and the fact that Cher isn’t exactly the best business woman, she’s running the risk of losing the club,” she says. “Her rival, Sonny, is trying to buy the club from her, so she has to come up with a way to try to bring in more business — when into the bar walks a young man named Chris who wants to be a big star in Akron, Ohio, and decides to become a drag queen.”
While the cast has since seen the original film and added bits to pay further homage, don’t expect anything less than hilarious parody. That much is clear when Imfurst describes her approach to her character.
“The Cher I play is basically Cher after a bottle of vodka and probably post-stroke,” she says. “You have to hone the craft of doing it badly.”
Fridays through Dec. 17,
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at West Bank Cafe
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