Saturday, April 21, 2012



Playwright:  Luciann Lajoie

Venue:  Off Center @the Jones, in the Denver Performing Arts Center, 1245 Champa Street, Denver, CO

Date of Performance:  Friday, April 20, 2012

Single white female, 32. Creative, educated, intelligent, funny, sexy, confident but vulnerable. 
Looking for:  intelligent, single male, 25-35, with a sense of humor, a real job, and no felony convictions.  Work as a fashion model is a plus.  Contact LJL.

OK. I admit it.  I made that up.  But it’s actually a pretty good approximation of Luci’s internet profile, and her internet dating dilemma.  Luci is Luciann Lajoie, the writer, researcher, and the only performer in the one-woman show “Date.” 

Well, maybe not “the only performer.”  Luci has interviewed more than 100 internet daters and collected their stories of the modern dating minefield.  Their stories are told through video cameos done by local actors.  In reality, each of these video actors is in the cast, but only in their electronic form.  It’s a nice irony; actors in electronic form representing real people who date in an electronic forum.

The story is a simple one:  it’s a dating JUNGLE out there.  Everyone lies on his or her profile.  Photoshop your face…or any other flaw.  Favorite book?  Google “list of books men like.”  Cut and paste.  It’s not necessary to read it first. 

But it’s not just about the internet rituals.  It’s also about the real life meet ups.  Making your first impression in person…figuring out what to wear (little black dress, perhaps), where to go, what to say.  And most importantly, you have to remember what you already revealed online.  The true stuff is easy to remember; the other stuff is a little more tricky.

One-person performances are difficult, especially when the subject is basically, well, you.  Autobiographical.  It can easily come off as self-serving, indulgent, and vain.  Not here, not her.  Not Luci.  She reveals herself (literally) so we can see her vulnerability and her pain.  We learn that the magician dressed in purple that she met up with rejected her!  Yes.  She didn’t even get a chance to say “this isn’t going to work.”

And we can see that while it IS about Luci, at least superficially, it’s also about the real dating victims out there.  The one who was attacked on her first date.  The one discovered that her date lied about his profile on  Turns out he wasn’t really Jewish.  And it’s about the one whose online boyfriend scammed her out of $500,000.  Really.

There’s hope though.  At least one of the 100 interviews ended well.  I won’t spoil it, but you’ll be relieved to know that you really can find love online.

I’m in the demographic (married) that doesn’t need to worry about the dating scene, online or otherwise.  That said, though, I don’t think dating was ever a picnic, and meeting people in bars, churches, and coffee shops was risky well before internet dating started.  So I’m not sure I’m learning anything new, but “Date” definitely reminds of something true:  be careful out there.  Finding Mr. or Ms Right is a crapshoot.  And internet or not, old or young, gay or straight, white, black, or brown, it’s always a lot harder than it looks.

Bottom line:  Luci is funny, cute, smart, and engaging.  And she has something to say.
NOTE:  This is not a family show.  In fact, it probably has the most value to those who are, or who have been, involved in internet dating.
This show runs through May 6, 2012.

Director:  Ashlee Temple

Cast:  Luciann Lajoie (“LJL”)

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