Some actors work as waiters while waiting for their big breaks. Carolann Valentino managed a multimillion-dollar steakhouse. It was an eye-opening experience, and she’s crafted the much-lauded and acclaimed one-woman musical Burnt at the Steak
around her adventures in restaurant-land. Valentino plays a cast of different characters in order to illustrate the extreme personalities she came across in the world of high-stakes food (pun intended). The idea for Burnt at the Steak
was born one night when a male guest collapsed from an apparent heart attack while waiting to be seated. As Valentino rushed to administer aid, an angry customer tapped her on the shoulder and exclaimed, “I’m going to die, too, if you don’t get me seated!” From then on, she knew that there was a comedy routine buried in her interim career. “All that I portray in my show are true events,” said Valentino.
“I am surprised to hear audience members question whether or not such horrific events could be real. I do believe most [people] don’t realize the level of madness…in customer-service-related industries,” she laments, before adding, “However, I wouldn’t change the madness for the world.”
Presented by Theater LaB 8 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, 5 and 8 p.m. Saturday, 3 p.m. Sunday. Houston Obsidian Art Space, 3522 White Oak, For information, call 713-868-7516 or visit theaterlabhouston.com. $25 to $35.
Nov. 20-22, 8 p.m.; Sat., Nov. 23, 5 & 8 p.m.; Sun., Nov. 24, 3 p.m., 2013