Choreographing Urinetown: The Musical

By: Missy Barnes, Choreographer
Urinetown is one of my all-time favorite musicals. The first time I heard the cast recording, I laughed out loud. At first hearing, I was particularly amused by the musical references to such classics as Fiddler on the Roof, West Side Story, Les Miz, andThe Threepenny Opera.
Inspiration for “What is Urinetown?”
Inspiration for “Follow Your Heart”
Inspiration for Act 1 Finale in Urinetown 
Inspiration for “Privilege to Pee”
On one level, Urinetowncan be seen as a tribute to the well-structured musical of the mid-twentieth century. It contains everything you could imagine a good story needs: a hero, a villain, a love story, and a struggle between two diverse groups of people. The songs are evenly spaced throughout the play in the tradition of Guys and Dolls and Hello, Dolly! In addition to the great music, the script is witty and intelligent. It offers the perfect blend of comedy and social commentary, dealing with such issues as environmental concerns and social Darwinism. Unlike the classics of the American musical theatre, the play offers a plot twist toward the end of Act II which reminds us that Urinetown is indeed a unique piece of theatre
Working on the musical for the second time has been a great pleasure. I love the creativity and excitement that exists within the production team. It is such a joy to work with a group who constantly strives for excellence and is always open to new possibilities. The Paul Green Theatreoffers a wonderful challenge in terms of creating choreography because there are so many areas in which staging can occur, including through the aisles near the audience. The cast is talented, enthusiastic, dedicated, and great fun to work with. I cannot imagine a more fabulous summer theatre experience than the one I have had working with PlayMakers SYC.

Urinetown: The Musical will be showing July 19 – July 22
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