Review: “Cooking with Kathryn” at the Kraine Theater
By Anthony J. Piccione
As a writer who has their own history with the Kraine Theater, I was well aware of the other ongoing events there, including the recent 2020 FRIGID Festival. While 2020 has been shaping up to be a busy and crazy year, I nonetheless found time recently to attend one of this year’s festival shows, upon receiving recommendation from a colleague of mine who was familiar with its lead performer.
Over the course of Cooking With Kathryn, the audience is treated to Kate Owens attempting through a “cooking show” filled with recipes gone mostly awry, and culminating with several awkward interactions fueled by what she constantly refers to as her special “mimosa mix” (straight-up whisky) that leave the audience laughing throughout. At first, it starts off slow, and I’ll admit that it wasn’t until the first 10 minutes or so that I was able to get into it. But as the show progressed, more of the humor landed with me, and the (clearly planned) chaos of this “cooking show” proved fun to watch.
With most of the audience participation portions clearly involving people she knew prior to the show, it is unclear just how much was improvised, and how much was planned ahead with said people. Yet it was nonetheless enjoyable to watch. I particularly enjoyed the “Dance Dance Revelation” skit roughly 15 minutes into the show, where the participants seemed less likely to have known what to expect. A big part of what makes the show enjoyable is its awkward humor of its lead performer, and the reactions it provokes from the participants.
I’m usually quite picky, in terms of solo-shows, but I ultimately found the show to be fairly entertaining to watch. While not without its shortcomings, it is worth the praise it received both in the FRIGID Festival, as well as during its runs in other past festivals. If it ever finds new life and comes to a venue near you, it’s certainly worth considering.
COOKING WITH KATHRYN
“Cooking with Kathryn” was performed and co-devised by Kate Owens, and directed and co-devised by Deby Xiadani.
“Cooking with Kathryn” ended its run at the Kraine Theater, as part of the 2020 FRIGID Festival, on March 8th.