The Missoula Community Theatre’s selection of plays and the timing of when they are produced is based on several criteria, including the quality of material, the ability to meet the technical requirements and much more. Titles also are important; after all, MCT is a nonprofit organization that must look at the “sale-ability” of its shows. There’s "Les Misérables," "The Sound of Music," "Tarzan" and other well-known plays. But "Urinetown: The Musical"? Who came up with that title? And why? The answers are Greg Kotis, who wrote the book, and shares the music and lyrics credit with Mark Hollman. Come see it to find out. Since its debut in 2002, this hilarious satire about municipal politics, a water company and the legal system (How far from reality can you get?) garnered three Tony Awards, among other accolades.
We know January can be a bit of a downer; it’s dark, cold and we can’t fit into our clothes after all the holiday nog and cookies. So why don’t we just laugh through it together? Thus, shows such as "9 to 5 The Musical," "Clue the Musical" and "The Drowsy Chaperone" fit perfectly into the post-holiday slot at MCT. It also gives us an opportunity to introduce some new fare to our audience. With that in mind, "Urinetown: The Musical" goes out of its wee … um, way, to do just that. Pun upon pun, song after song, it may just provide the humor that gives your abdominal muscles a good workout from laughing. Yet, the show also has its share of compelling moments, found in the lyrics of “Follow Your Heart”: “When darkness surrounds you and you lose your way, you have your own compass that turns night to day and it’s even with you before you depart. Be still, hear it beating, it’s leading you; follow your heart.”
Another opportunity MCT has taken on is the challenge of reducing waste. MCT’s technical director Theresa Jenson explains that “As a community organization, we recognize the movement toward zero waste in Missoula. As such, we decided to do one production a year in which we really focus on this movement. An important aspect of zero waste is re-use and that is how MCT approaches it. Our goal is to produce the set, costumes, props, lighting and sound for a show using only items that have been used before. As a general practice, we reuse most of what we build anyway, so this isn't a huge leap, but we really focus our efforts in this direction and help draw attention to the zero waste movement within our community.”
The irony is not lost on us that "Urinetown: The Musical" is our “zero waste” production this season. We think you’re in for a good time at this musical Pee-G parody.