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Tony Winning Musical Satire at the Marcus Center

Oct. 31, 2016
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Photo by Joan Marcus

When first hearing the premise of The Book of Mormon, a satirical musical about Mormon missionaries in Uganda, one might be skeptical about how successful a show like this can be. But the musical by comedy writers Trey Parker, Robert Lopez and Matt Stone been wildly successful, winning nine Tony Awards.

At a recent performance at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, the audience was already roaring in laughter at the first few sentences of dialogue. The musical began with a short, hilarious retelling of the origin of the Mormon religion. This soon transitioned into a look at the modern-day Mormonism many of us might be familiar with: a group of eager, young men dressed in crisp white shirts and slacks, ringing doorbells and asking to talk about the Book of Mormon. The first song, “Hello!,” is a catchy, upbeat and perfect way to introduce the characters. Witty and hysterical, “Hello!” set the tone for the rest of the musical.

The stage set was vibrant and colorful, always changing into something different and unexpected, much like the characters themselves in the story. Perhaps the most lovable character, Elder Cunningham (Cody Jamison Strand), was loud, nasally voiced, obnoxious yet endearing. He becomes one of the most caring characters. The audience quickly becomes invested in his relations with Elder Price (Gabe Gibbs) and Nabulungi (Candace Quarrels), whose name he is constantly mispronouncing.

The Book of Mormon is a wildly hilarious musical that manages to tackle often serious and taboo subjects.


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