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Spooky (Hilarious) Mormon Hell Dream…The Book of Mormon (Detroit) tour review March 13, 2013

Posted by ronannarbor in Uncategorized.

I won’t go much into the show itself, since there is little one can add to “review” the musical THE BOOK OF MORMON, continuing its tour now in Detroit, except to say that the production is superb, the cast excellent, and the humor as raunchy as ever. Sending our cast of naive white-boy Mormon missionaries off into warlord-torn Uganda, little needs to be said about the plot and developments that hasn’t already either been said, or shown (see YouTube). If you don’t know much about the show and are seeing it soon, the better for you — the jokes play far better if you don’t already know whats coming around the bend, so I won’t say more.

I’ve reviewed the show before when seen on Broadway: https://a2view.com/2011/07/31/the-book-of-mormon-catch-me-if-you-can-sister-act-broadway-reviews/

The show arrives at the Fisher Theater to two weeks of sold-out performances — and for good reason. Appealing to a wide-audience, the Best Musical Tony-winner ramps up the humor but keeps a lot of heart intact. South Park fans will find a lot to love in this very unconventional musical, while musical theater fans will find a lot to love in the excellent execution of it all. 

British actor Mark Evans plays a spirited and energetic Elder Price (I am assuming this was some type of trade for Gavin Creel heading off to London to do the part there), but the special kudos for this tour production have to go to the sublime roly-poly Christopher John O’Neill as his sidekick Elder Arnold Cunningham. His facial expressions alone are enough to slay them in the aisles, but he’s a great singer and dancer to boot. A bit more reserved than Josh Gad in the role, he brings amazing charisma and a star-making turn to his role.

The tour is identical to the Broadway show — down to the set and costumes, and if you didn’t get a chance to see it in NYC, see it on tour (it might be easier to get tickets on Broadway these days, the tour seems to sell every single seat within hours of tickets going on sale — check for house seat releases or cancellations a few days before each performance).

If you are among the ticket-holders for The Book of Mormon, count yourself lucky — its an excellent tour that will have you laughing (and talking about the show) all the way home. As usual, just a reminder that this is not a show that is family friendly. In fact, its not even pre-teen friendly. Apparently Broadway-in-Detroit did a pretty good job making sure that audiences know its not for kids — its a great night out for open-minded adults. My mom would still walk out. 

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