poster by Kyle Cassidy model: Jade Vixen

citypaper ARTS . Arts Picks


Ross Bender
Mon., Sept. 10, 8 p.m., free, Abbraccio, 820 S. 47th St., 215-727-8247, www.rossbender.org.
by Mary Armstrong
Published: Sep 4, 2007

"What on earth are you talking about? You're pretty incoherent for a City Paper writer, if you don't mind my saying so," says Ross Bender, ducking my request for a quick phoner.

The University City satirist whose had 'em laughing/scratching their heads at various online venues (and a rare real-life stage, here and there) over the last few years prefers to remain mysterious. "Anyhow, I never talk on the telephone, particularly to strange women I've never met, because you never know who's listening in. Might be the Russians, might be the CIA, might be my wife."

You'll find him at his own site (www.rossbender.org), online satire rag Dead Brain (www.deadbrain.com) or various University City e-mail lists. Last time he took the stage with a pile of compiled works from those places, his worldview became apparent: We are all fair game. He's infamous for his thinly veiled references to local personalities from UPenn presidents to local gadflies (Bender himself proudly counted among the latter). No, you don't have to know the personalities he's skewering to get a good laugh at his appearance at Abbraccio on Monday, but do look around the room; last time, many of the notorious were there to hear it firsthand. Let's give him the last word.

"Also, the only time I read City Paper is when I'm sitting in the waiting room of my shrink's office, waiting to deconstruct my desires. I find that the ads in the back of your 'newspaper' help me to clarify my deepest unconscious wishes."

Mon., Sept. 10, 8 p.m., free, Abbraccio, 820 S. 47th St., 215-727-8247, www.rossbender.org.


photo by Kyle Cassidy

Girard Rudasill as the Prince, Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare in Clark Park, 2007


photo by Kyle Cassidy