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Southern Florida by John Lariviere


Urinetown

Also see John's reviews of Next to Normal and The Elaborate Entrance Of Chad Deity

Urinetown
The Cast
The Slow Burn Theatre presents Urinetown, The Musical at the West Boca performing Arts Center. This three-time Tony Award winning Broadway musical revolves around a world suffering from a drought that has lasted over twenty years. Private toilets are a thing of the past in a town now run by a powerful corporation (Urine Good Company) that forces its citizens to pay to use the public amenities. Here, peeing without paying is punishable by banishment to the dreaded Urinetown.

Amongst quirky characters such as Soupy Sue (Sabrina Gore), Becky Two-Shoes (Kristina Johnson), Robby the Stockfish (Justin Schneyer), Hot Blades Harry (Conor Walton) and Penelope Pennywise (Cindy Pearce) arises our brave hero Bobby Strong (Daniel Schwab). He leads the oppressed townspeople in a revolution against the corrupt establishment run by Caldwell B. Cladwell (Larry Buzzeo) and his cronies. Bobby is unexpectedly swept away by the pure and tenderhearted Hope Cladwell (Lindsey Forgey), who is Caldwell Cladwell's daughter.

Campy and irreverent, Urinetown, The Musical is filled with cheap, melodramatic bits, situational humor, and physical gags. The commentary in the internal narratives delivered by Officer Lockstock (Matthew Korinko) and Little Sally (Jamie Kautzmann) poke fun at both the show itself and the American musical theatre genre in general. Numbers include choreographic send-ups of West Side Story, Fiddler On The Roof and Les Misérables.

The costumes and a set covered in grime set the scene for the soiled world of Urinetown. A five-piece orchestra accompanies a well sung show, and Patrick Fitzwater again provides very clean direction. He gets the comic style of the musical across with panache. The production also benefits from strong lighting and sound design by Lance Blank and Traci Almeida.

Matthew Korinko has a wonderful comedic touch as Officer Lockstock. His aside moments with Jamie Kautzmann as Little Sally are some of the funniest in the show, and also important in establishing the feel of musical. Jason Edelstein as Lockstock's sidekick, Officer Barrel, admirably finds a way to make an odd role interesting with his jittery, home-boy portrayal. Daniel Schwab does a nice job as the scruffy, under-dog Bobby Strong. Lindsey Forgey as Hope Caldwell is one of the strongest actors in the show, as she really gets all of her comic moments. Cindy Pearce is hysterical as Penelope Pennywise. She milks every possible double-take, double-entendre, entrance and exit in a nearly scene-stealing performance that makes it hard to watch anyone else when she is on stage.

This production of Urinetown is sheer fun from start to finish.

Composer and lyricist Mark Hollmann has also written the music and lyrics for musical adaptations of the films Soapdish and My Man Godfrey, and two new musicals with Greg Kotis: Yeast Nation and The Man In The White Suit, a musical adaptation of the 1951 Alec Guinness film of the same title. In addition to his continued collaborations with creative partner Mark Holman, Kotis is also the author of the plays Pig Farm, Jobey and Katherine, Baron von Siebenburg Melts Through the Floorboards, and Give the People What They Want.

The Slow Burn Theatre production of Urinetown, The Musical will be appearing through January 29, 2012, at the West Boca Performing Arts Center on the campus of West Boca High, 12811 West Glades Rd. (3.5 miles west of 441). The Slow Burn Theatre Company is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) professional theatre company hiring local actors and actresses. They are committed to bringing high-quality contemporary musical theatre to South Florida, and proving that modern Broadway can rock. The company offers technical internships to local students, providing them with professional experience. Performances of the current show are Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 p.m., and Sundays at 2:00 p.m. For more information on Slow Burn you may contact them by phone at 866-811-4111 or line at www.slowburntheatre.com.

Cast:
Officer Lockstock: Matthew Korinko
Little Sally: Jamie Kautzmann
Penelope Pennywise: Cindy Pearce
Bobby Strong: Daniel Schwab
Hope Cladwell: Lindsey Forgey
Mr. McQueen: Rick Pena
Senator Fipp: Michael Torok
Old Man Strong/Hot Blades Harry: Conor Walton
Tiny Tom: Christopher Mitchell
Soupy Sue: Sabrina Gore
Becky Two-Shoes: Kristina Johnson
Robby the Stockfish: Justin Schneyer
Billy Boy Bill: Kevin Gish
Ma Strong: Lisa Kerstin Braun
Officer Barrel: Jason Edelstein
Caldwell B. Cladwell: Larry Buzzeo

Crew:
Director/Choreographer: Patrick Fitzwater
Scenic Design: Ian T. Almeida
Lighting Designer: Lane Blank
Sound: Traci Almeida
Costumes: Rick Pena
Production Manager: Jon Jones


Photo: Gemma Bramham


See the current theatre season schedule for southern Florida.

-- John Lariviere



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