Edgy musicals on the way

Old school musical purists, cover your eyes. A parade of new, irreverent musicals (some not yet officially announced) are on the way to Indy.

Some examples:

In the fall, Theatre on the Square not only will be offering the blood-spattered “Evil Dead: The Musical” (everybody sing along: “We’re five college students on our way to an old abandoned cabin in the woods!”) but it will also present “A Very Merry Unauthorized Children’s Scientology Pageant.”

Yes, the show “celebrates” L. Ron Hubbard—and features a cast of children.

Buck Creek Players—which introduced such challenging musicals as “Parade” and “Violet” to Indy audiences—will be staging “Grey Gardens” as part of its 2008/2009 season. It tells of Big Edie and Little Edie, the eccentric Kennedy cousins who lived reclusively until a documentary film brought their story to light.

And there’s more. In July, a new company called All Alike Productions will be staging the local premiere of “Bare: a pop opera” at the Wheeler Art Center. Even the conservative Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre will be stretching some boundaries by offering the regional premiere of Mel Brooks’ “The Producers.”

There’s also a certain adult-oriented musical hit that will be opening the Indianapolis Broadway series in the fall. You’ll be hearing an announcement of that one soon.

Plus, the Phoenix, which has given us “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” “Urinetown” and “Bat Boy” has a number of lesser-known tuners under consideration for next season.

So are you—and Indy—willing to take chances on musicals beyond “Oklahoma!” and “Joseph”?

Your thoughts?

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