theater is my religion, The Book of Mormon is my most sacred text. Not the actual book of course, rather the wildly irreverent musical written by the creators of South Park (Trey Parker and Matt Stone) along with EGOT winner Robert Lopez. It is a nearly perfect musical, and definitely one of most joyous musicals I've ever seen. One of the brilliant things about The Book of Mormon is that it allows us to laugh at institutionalized religion (and let's face it, there are plenty of ridiculous things to laugh at) while still espousing the value of faith in oneself and one's friends and community, and "working together to make this our paradise planet!" It truly is a feel-good musical that has the hugest heart, despite its unbelievably foul mouth. Back when it premiered in 2011, The Book of Mormon was what Hamilton is today - a smash hit musical that swept the Tonys and was an impossible ticket to get. Fortunately seven years later tickets are a little easier to come by; tickets are still available (including rush and lottery, click here for details). If you're a fan of musical theater (who isn't offended by profanity and poking fun at religion), The Book of Mormon is definitely a must-see. And since it's still running on Broadway and touring the country, it likely won't be available for regional productions for many years, so this tour may be your only chance to see it for a while. Don't miss it!
|Kevin Clay as Elder Price|
(photo by Julieta Cervantes)
|Conner Peirsonn as Elder Cunningham|
(photo by Julieta Cervantes)
2018 update: Seven years later they're still able to find super talented people to fill these roles. And yes, Elders Price and Cunningham are always cast with an Andrew Rannells type and a Josh Gad type, but Kevin Clay and Conner Peirson make the roles their own and bring their own talents and energy to the performance. Kevin is charming and fresh-faced as Elder Price, full of youthful energy on such songs as "All-American Prophet," making it all the more fun to watch him descend into caffeine fueled madness. Conner is absolutely hilarious as Elder Cunningham, thoughtful in every unexpected and entertaining choice. In supporting roles, Kayla Pecchioni is lovely as the open-hearted Nabulungi, Andy Huntington Jones (last seen at the Orpheum as Cinderella's Prince) is a charismatic Elder "Turn It Off" McKinley, and Ron Bohmer impressively embodies (or voices) four featured roles. The entire supporting cast and ensemble is fan-freaking-tastic, playing so many roles with countless costume changes and pulling it all off effortlessly and with great passion.
|the cast of The Book of Mormon (photo by Julieta Cervantes)|
If religion is a set of stories, myths, and legends that we humans use to help us understand the joys, sorrows, and mysteries of the world we live in, then theater truly is my religion. And nothing fills my soul like The Book of Mormon.
Ma ha nei bu, Eebowai.