Photo by Don Kellogg

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Book of Mormon

Previews just started on what I firmly believe is going to be the best new musical of the season!  Without a doubt, a clever, intelligent, and completely irreverent book written by Trey Parker and Matt Stone of South Park fame and Robert Lopez of the Tony Award winning Avenue Q fame.   Did I mention it's irreverent?  In 2 1/2 short hours they manage to skewer the entire Mormon religion, all the while your gut is busting from all the laugh out loud moments.  Behind it all there's a message about religion, humanity, faith and community. Now how awesome is that?!

As you would suspect, the story is about the required mission that all young Mormon boys must take when they turn 18 - in this story - Elder Cunningham (Josh Gad) and Elder Price (Andrew Rannells) and their wild trip to Uganda in Africa.  Did I mention the play is irreverent?  To take a quote from another show, "Fasten your seat belts, it's gonna be a bumpy night".  By the time they meet up with Elder McKinley (Rory O'Malley) and a village of Ugandans including Nabulung (Nikki M. James), Mafala Hatambi (Michael Potts) - your side is already throbbing from the infectious laughter.  The entire ensemble cast is divided into two - the local Mormon mission and the local African villagers.

The other adorably handsome boys at the mission never fail to entertain and delight - filling both acts with rousing, big-Broadway dance numbers - including some rousing tap with shiny pink sequin vests (yes, it's occasionally more than your basic black and white outfits for these boys).  The local Ugandan villagers start us off with a great African inspired number titled Fuck God - and the temperature in the theatre heats up from there.  When the two groups meet up it's double the singing, dancing, dream sequences and insults all around.  I mean, seriously, there's a lot to laugh about when it comes to Mormons!

No spoiler alert needed here - I won't give away Matt, Trey, Robert or the ever-brilliant choreographer, Casey Nicholaw's, big-Broadway secrets.  If you want to see a deliciously entertaining new Broadway musical chock full of blasphemous humor, adorably handsome Mormon boys and an African village filled with AIDS - get your tickets for this Book today.  Did I mention it's irreverent?