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Magic Carpet Ride

Alicia Levy fine tunes her repertoire of characters into a prime-time ready showcase

Although SNL may have gotten a decent Angelina Jolie impression out of hiring on Abby Elliot and Michaela Watkins this season, it may have missed an opportunity by not calling on Alicia Levy, a gifted performer who now has a very TV-ready showcase of impressions and characters on display in her latest solo show, “Alicia Levy’s Red Carpet Ride,” seen at the People’s Improv Theatre on March 5.

With Lorne Michaels reportedly always hungry for impressions when auditioning potential cast members, Levy has at least two stellar and relevant ones in the new show -- reality and gossip page personality Kim Kardashian, and singer Macy Gray. These might seem easy enough to lampoon, but Levy, having written her own show as well, gets some subtlety into these pieces as well, where Kardashian talks about doing a car wash benefit to be called “Kim Kardashian’s Kar-wash-ian,” for “research and development,” never specifying what the R&D might be for or about.

And as Macy Gray, with the trademark rasp in her hit “I Try” down pat, Levy throws in a well-fit lyric, “…like the weed that I smoke…” She’s also got a Victoria Beckham impression in her repertoire, along with some original characters one could easily imagine recurring on SNL, such as a clumsy Eastern European performer going on auditions for the Pussycat Dolls, Sesame Street and America’s Got Talent, in desperate pursuit of a green card -- extrapolating on a shorter version of this character seen in her previous show (see review from 9/8/08).

Levy has added another new character, a Britney Spears-like troubled pop star, “Touche,” complete with a showcase song, “I’m Too Young To Be Your Baby Mama.” The photos and video leading up to the song, chronicling her descent into scratch-off lottery tickets and other vices, actually pack a sharp punch themselves. Levy doesn’t rely as much on video in this newest show, which is quite short and succinct, and could possibly benefit with the addition of one more impression or a new take on one of her previously seen characters.

Still, most of what Levy has in “Red Carpet Ride” has great potential for development into more, either on television, online or in some other wider channel.

“Alicia Levy’s Red Carpet Ride” recurs at The PIT at 8 p.m. on Thursdays, March 12, 19 and 26, as well as 8 p.m. March 23 as part of “Comedy Central at Crash Mansion” (located at 199 Bowery in New York). 



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