The title of the attraction at the Warehouse Rep -- "Charles Busch Alone With a Cast of Thousands" -- is a slight exaggeration. The character-count is more like 20 in this diverting one-man show.
A wiry young chap of near-manic energy, Busch presents set-pieces for which he assumes all roles. In "A Theatrical Party," a complicated business treating a soir,ee of English show folk, he slides deftly from kitchen maid to grande dame to pompous curmudgeon and back, giving each personage the clarity of gin and tonic.
He does the same in "The Dream," a venture in zany surrealism that features a literary cocktail party, a psychiatric session conducted as a stand-up comedy routine, Nazi spies in a German bakery and a heinous plot to annihilate American show business on the occasion of Radio City Music Hall's "Cavalcade of Stars."
Busch's home-grown material shows sharp wit and tart observation. "It's been great meeting you, Miss Bronte," the hero of "The Dream" burbles at a famous author. "And good luck with your cable deal." It also has moments of inspired invention, as when our neurotically thespian hero performs compulsively for his shrink; or maudlin kitsch, as with "A Theatrical Party's" tale of a lad coming home to the father he never knew.
But it is, above all, camp -- in the way a female impersonator is camp. For all Busch's versatility, and for all the evening's enjoyment, the tone sticks resolutely to the same brassy key. CHARLES BUSCH -- At the Source Theater's Warehouse Rep through June 18.