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’10 Myths’ Confronts Modern Enigmas


10 Myths on the Proper Application of Beauty Products is, in essence, a modern myth. The play is hard to concisely summarize, but that is what makes it so intriguing. Hosted by the Buntport Theater Company, the play’s venue is located far down the Art District on Santa Fe, next to eccentrically decorated homes in a rented out warehouse space. The independent theater is unassuming and humble in its presence, as is their current play.

The play is an adaptation of Denver author Miriam Suzanne’s novel Riding SideSaddle. The book is composed of 250 note cards that are not numbered, so it does not have to be read in any particular order. The novel and the play are inspired by the life of Margaret Clap, the first women to open a hotel exclusively for gay men, and the myth of Hermaphroditus, giving the piece its mythological air. Each index card reads a few sentences at the most, some humorous and some leaving readers with a lump in their throat.

10 Myths is a cryptic and enigmatic play about an ambiguous group of friends who thoroughly thwart the notions of order, gender, identity, and normalcy.

Suzanne’s novel is as enticing as the adaptation. Segments of her novel are pinned on the wall before entering the theater; they act as novelized embellishments against the black wall. Note cards reading heart aching things among other eloquent and poetic fragments all tender, harrowing, and bewitching, such as, “He leaves piles of me scattered in corners. I want to wretch, but I can’t.”

The play is a 21st-century myth being relayed from a bathroom. A band sits in the bathtub playing music while the audience enters. The band is Teacup Gorilla, an alternative local band with the bass played by the writer, Suzanne herself. As the lights go pitch black for a minute or so, a woman appears on stage dressed in baggy blue jeans and a T-shirt. “Makeup tutorial number one,” she says, looking out into the audience as if it were her mirror.

Most of the story is told from perhaps one of the most private places in one’s home: the bathroom. Each character appears, providing their own makeup tutorial, which often veers off into a far more captivating story of Greek myths or personal tangents than a tutorial on how to make your eyebrows “on fleek.”

10 Myths is a diamond in the rough—a play about the absurdity of categories, the sadistic ritual of makeup, and how inaccurately Barbie is proportioned.

It is about the occasional atrocity of humanity, and how “ghosts are dicks, and why can’t they just be dead?” It’s about the farce of 21st-century abbreviations, about challenging the idea of God and tradition, about myth and reality, about the days when you feel crazy. 10 Myths is the 21st-century myth: The characters are humorous and charming, and they are blank slates as clear as dishwater. The play is aching, tender, and blithe, and it leaves the viewer with a sense of a peculiar belonging.

—Sarai Nissan

photo courtesy of

Buntport Theater Company

717 Lipan St.

(720) 946-1388


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