Published in

Jell-O Pudding Shots With Radiohole

If the Wooster Group is the older, wiser product of the avant-garde theater scene, then Radiohole is the younger, unruly sibling that might burp in your face.

The rowdy theater troupe explores the concept of a chick-flick melodrama in their most recent production, "Whatever, Heaven Allows" at P.S. 122. It’s a mash-up of Douglas Sirk's 1955 film "All That Heaven Allows" and, of all things, John Milton’s Paradise Lost. The show addresses issues of identity, womanhood and societal judgment, but in Radiohole's fun-loving way.

Radiohole cast members like to have a good time on stage. Practically anything goes, from wrestling around the set to knocking back PBRs. The actors aren't afraid to get dirty either; they perform the majority of the show covered in chocolate pudding.

"There tends to be a mess or there tends to be beer," explains actress Maggie Hoffman.

It's not just for the sake of being fun, it's technique.

"When you throw Jell-O in your face, you’re having a real moment. You can’t act that — it’s a real thing,” says Hoffman. "It's sort of a way to stay grounded and not pretend."

Gelatin products aide, the company's goofy, non-linear story-telling is getting legit accolades. Radiohole received the Spalding Gray Award in 2009.

"One of the things that makes this company interesting to me is that it is always a group effort. Everybody's voice is in the show," says Radiohole’s Eric Dyer.

Though Dyer admits the sensory overload can be "difficult for people to get their head around." He says, "We don’t streamline it into a narrative and into a coherent idea." But, Dyer says they prefer it that way.

And if you prefer not to get splattered with some form of goop as an audience member — word of advice — sit beyond the first two rows.

"Whatever, Heaven Allows" has been extended until March 21.

Watch the video for a behind-the-scenes look at Radiohole's latest show.