Author: Aubrey Warner

Desert Star gives us Hogwarts Reunion

MURRAY — I am a huge Harry Potter nerd.  I have all six films, multiple copies of each of the seven books, the audio recordings, games, T-shirts, buttons, supplemental literature, and in 2007 I went to Canada for a convention.  So when I heard about Desert Star Theater’s Welcome Back Potter, I was weary of the new parody.  I took my sister to the production thinking that if it bombed, at least the two of us could laugh at it together.  We’re still laughing at it, but for all the right reasons. Welcome Back Potter is a short but charming (ha ha!) sort-of musical about Harry, Ron, and Hermione’s 10-year Hogwarts reunion.  Harry has just emerged from unknown whereabouts, Ron and Hermione are expecting their first child, and Harry’s old nemesis Draco Malcontent is up to no good.  The story continues as Harry and Company embark on a quest to retrieve the Funky Hallows in order to defeat the dark disco wizard Voldie Barbarino. Fear not, muggles!  While the whole thing takes place on Hogwarts grounds, even those unfamiliar with J. K. Rowling’s appreciable anthologies will still find Ed Farnsworth’s original musical to be a barrel of laughs.  Farnsworth’s dialogue is balanced enough to please walking encyclopedias like me, and magical novices alike.  The jokes range from a kooky spin on the Deathly Hallows, to pop culture references, to...

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Mullets and Mayhem at “Trailer Park Musical”

  The Great American Trailer Park Musical is just that – a great American musical about the goings on at a trailer park. Park City’s Dark Horse Company Theatre brought Armadillo Acres and its residents to irreverent life in this ninety-odd-minute, intermission-free romp.With book by Betsy Kelso and music and lyrics by David Nehls, The Great American Trailer Park Musical follows Jeannie and Norbert Garstekis in the month leading up to their wedding anniversary. Jeannie, whose traumatic past has turned her agoraphobic, is taking steps (her first outside the house in 20 years) towards a date at the Ice Capades, while Norbert is falling for the stripper next door. Without giving too much away, bad-perm-y , hysterical -pregnancy, stolen-baby, and dream-sequence-y hilarity ensues. The story is told by a versatile trio comprised of Betty (Shalee Schmidt), Armadillo Acres’ landlady; Linoleum (Marianne Armistead), whose husband is behind bars; and Pickles (Carianne H. Jones), an adorable if slightly confused teenager. Schmidt, Armistead, and Jones have a huge responsibility, as the show is carried largely by these three characters. They rose to the challenge magnificently, filling every bit part from talk show host to “Flan Stand” workers to road kill. All three women have crazy good voices (especially Schmidt in “Storm’s A-Brewin'”), and each brought something unique to the table, which created an exciting and dynamic ensemble. After they appeared as mullet-sporting...

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