CG: Varla Jean and the Mushroomheads to Premiere at NewFest 7/25

July 12, 2011 - by NYC News Desk
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Jeffery Roberson aka Varla Jean Merman, will debut his new film Varla Jean and the Mushroomheads at NewFest, New York's premier LGBT Film Festival. The film will show on Saturday, July 23rd at 9:30PM and Monday, July 25th at 5:00PM. For tickets please visit

Varla Jean Merman, the creation of Jeffery Roberson and star of the cult film Girls Will Be Girls, won the Elliot Norton Award last May for her performance as Phantom of the OPRAH in Boston. She was a featured guest on TV's Ugly Betty and Project Runway, and recently starred Off-Broadway in the musical Lucky Guy opposite Leslie Jordan. Varla's highly anticipated, outrageous new show entitled The Book of Merman will premiere at The Art House in Provincetown, MA this summer (Aug 4 - Sept 17). The film also features Broadway veterans Seth Rudetsky who is a daily host on Sirius/XM Radio and Donna Drake who was in the original cast of A Chorus Line.

Directed by Michael Schiralli, Varla Jean and the Mushroomheads is a mockumentary chronicling the daffy diva's attempts to mount a low-budget children's television show. After years of performing in dive bars and bathhouses around New Orleans, semi-celebrity and loose chanteuse Varla Jean Merman (Jeffery Roberson) is watching her audience get older by the minute. In a last-ditch effort to prop up her sagging career, Varla decides to go after a younger crowd - kids. Recruiting former child star Donna Drake (from Dear Alex & Annie) and composer-performer Seth Rudetsky, Varla sets out to cobble together a show that will be educational, entertaining and, most importantly, launch her into stardom with the pre-pubescent set. Saddled with two unwilling co-stars, a bitter actor and a former pageant coach (plus a porn star/born again Christian pianist played by Tom Judson aka "Gus Mattox"), Varla must learn the importance of being part of a team if her dream is to be realized. After acclaimed success as an international chanteuse, Varla Jean is ready for her closeup in this hilariously inappropriate comedy!

Directed by Michael Shiralli
Written by Jacquess Lamarre and Jeffery Roberson
Run time: 83 minutes | USA | Language: English
Starring Varla Jean Merman (Jeffery Roberson), Seth Rudetsky, Donna Drake, Ricky Graham, Brian Peterson, and Tom Judson.

Saturday, July 23 at 9:30PM at Cinema Village 1
Monday, July 25 at 5:00PM at Cinema Village 2
22 E 12th Street, NYC
212 924-3363

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