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Sounds-like-porn music is really as wholesome as apple pie.

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Porthouse Theatre launches its new season tonight with Pump Boys and Dinettes, the story of six high-stepping, string-strumming kids and a roadside diner that doubles as a gas station. “It’s more of a concert than a play,” says director Eric van Baars.

The 25-year-old show, billed as a country and blues musical revue, is short on thespian workouts and dramatic twists. But there’s plenty of singing, dancing, and down-home gags. “It’s like Prairie Home Companion,” says van Baars. “It’s a good time, with lots of corny jokes thrown in.” Van Baars is even making Pump Boys (which was nominated for a Tony back in the day) an interactive experience for theatergoers. While some cast members sing tunes like “The Night Dolly Parton Was Almost Mine” onstage, others will stroll into the audience with slices of pie, and a few lucky viewers will suddenly find themselves at dinner theater. Van Baars won’t say whether or not the actresses had a hand in making the desserts. After all, it’s their singing and dancing that got them the gig, he says. “My mind-set is, Would you want to spend two hours with these people?”
Tuesdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m. Starts: June 14. Continues through June 30

Speaking of Highlights

More by Marge Perko.

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