Randy Roberts in Aging Disgracefully

Anti-Aging Medicine
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Review by Steve Desroches

To watch Randy Roberts perform is to witness a master class in entertainment. And like all the greats of any genre, Roberts makes it all look easy as it’s evident he’s at home on the stage creating a connection with the audience from the moment he takes to the spotlight. Anybody can draw attention to themselves, but Roberts knows how to command it with a gentle strength, finely honed talents, and a classic razzmatazz, managing to be classy and brassy in the same breath. And in his new show, Aging Disgracefully, Roberts doesn’t reflect on his long career, but rather shows he’s only getting better and better batting away ageist concepts in our culture like annoying mosquitos, and showcasing that Botox is no substitute for smarts, talent, hard work, and experience (and, alright, maybe a little nip/tuck here and there, too). Aging Disgracefully is a delight from start to finish in this drag cabaret with all-live singing, searing parodies, a bit of celebrity impersonation, but a definitive Randy Roberts creation through and through.

Long the toast of Key West, Florida, where he performs at the LaTeDa cabaret on Duval Street, Roberts careened into Provincetown 25 years ago and quickly became an icon as “Cher on a Scooter” as he whizzed down Commercial Street while barking for his show, allowing him to cover more territory much quicker. And both Cher and Bette Midler make appearances in the show, fitting as these two legends show that performers of any age can continually evolve while also keeping to one’s own vision and viewpoints. Most of the show is performed as Randy Roberts, the self-aware drag persona of the man of the same name. The key component that makes Roberts’ shows so entertaining is that he knows how to glide on the edge by being racy, but never raunchy, playful, but never mean, and old-school, without ever being stale or out-of-date. It’s the total package.

As Roberts mentions in Aging Disgracefully, he rarely ever brings up politics in any of his shows. But he is a drag queen from Florida, the current ground zero of the country’s culture wars and a bigoted right-wing. And drag is specifically under attack. How Roberts manages to address the issue is testament to his talent, as with a lesser performer the audience might tense up or the oxygen could leave the room at the mention of the troubles of the world outside the Post Office Cabaret. But you feel so at home and taken care of by Roberts, there’s no worry. True, an audience at a drag show in Provincetown is likely to be on the same page culturally and politically, but nevertheless it’s still a risk and it pays off marvelously with a great take down of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and a rousing rendition of the gay power anthem “Color Out Of Colorado.”

A night with Randy Roberts is exactly the antidote we need for these troubled times. You’ll leave feeling like you got your own good time anti-aging shot!

Randy Roberts performs in Aging Disgracefully at the Post Office Cabaret, 303 Commercial St., Thursday at 8:30 p.m. and Fridays and Tuesday at 7 p.m. now through August 29. Tickets ($35/$45) are available at the box office and online at postofficecafe.net. For more information call 508.487.0087.