During the mid-80’s, Edward Zanni, a young gay man, is kicked out of Julliard for being “too jazz hands” for the prestigious school. He lands a job as a ‘party motivator’ performing at bar mitzvahs as the hottest VJ from Britain’s MTV, and also posing as a ‘stealth guest’ at corporate functions, schmoozing up to business men. Through the latter, Eddie gets involved in an insider trading scheme with the handsome broker Chad.
Soon his life spirals out of control, hilariously. He’s wanted by the Securities Exchange Commission for his role in the insider trading sandal, stalked by a teenage Jewish girl and terrorized by his ‘Bride of Frankenstein’ ex-stepmother who seems to haunt his every step.
The only way Eddie can clear his name is to implicate Chad to the SEC. Easier said than done since the gorgeous broker is slippery as an eel.
His theatre friends, an eclectic and eccentric group, come to his rescue by devising one hare-brained scheme after another to trap Chad.
The final showdown, involving a Bruce Springsteen impersonator, a dump truck costume from Starlight Express and a fake Shah of Iran, ends hysterically in a slapstick scene reminiscent of the climax in “What’s Up, Doc?” including everyone being arrested and hauled down to the police station.
Rife with theatre and literary references and snarky comments, Theatre People had me laughing out loud. Acito’s writing style is easy-going and a joy to read. Anyone who loves theatre and lots of good laughs will enjoy this book.