Chicago-based solo performance artist Lisa Kotin works in some of America’s premier blue-chip companies as a temp–a position that has given her enough material to create two witty shows based on her experience in corporate America. Her new two-act show, Temporary Girl: The Office Christmas Party, is a sequel to her 1992 hit, Temporary Girl, and is a multimedia endeavor in which Kotin plays five characters who are much like women all of us have met. For the most part they are the cogs in the wheels of the corporate world: secretaries, receptionists, word processors, and, of course, temps. Kotin’s characters are authentic and likable, though at times she paints them unflatteringly. Like most intelligent women stuck in dead-end situations, they resort to various forms of subterfuge or bitchiness to survive. Kotin’s portrayals are sometimes sketchy–her comedic depictions, like much physical comedy, are done in broad strokes–but always polished, strangely haunting, and sad. Chicago Filmmakers, 1543 W. Division; 384-5533. Performances are Fridays and Saturdays, April 21-29 at 8 PM. $8.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Photo/Iwana Biedermann.