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In his recent tribute to Cherry Red Productions—D.C.’s performance troupe for whom gross indecency is a raison d’être—Washington City Paper contributor Benjamin R. Freed rightly called the long dirty joke known as “The Aristocrats” “a comedic endurance test.” So a whopping hour-long version of the gag seems an appropriate subject for the 16-year-old collective’s farewell show tonight. Its penultimate effort, last winter’s Wife Swappers, merely offered ubiquitous soft-bellied nudity—nothing to push the needle of the gross-out meter very far, given the troupe’s prior forays into, for instance, simulated snuff films. Oh, it also made an actual argument, too. But this time, the Reds have promised to leave no innards-wringing stunt behind. Everyone is ready to move on: Artistic Director Ian Allen moved to New York years ago, and the company’s other principals are busy with other projects. But tonight, the tickets benefit the D.C. Arts Center, so there’s a reason to go beyond mere respect-paying to a group that certainly made the local stagescape more colorful.
Cherry Red performs The Aristocrats at 8:30 p.m. and 11 p.m. at Warehouse Theater, 645 New York Ave. NW. $29–$49.