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Hedwig’s angry inch back in Savannah

 

Hedwig’s angry inch back in Savannah

20 Nov 2013

Described by ViewLondon as a “transsexual, post-punk, neo-glam rock opera,” the powerhouse production of John Cameron Mitchell’s story of a punk rock singer from East Berlin with an “angry inch” problem, on tour in the U.S. with her hard-scrabble rock band, is making its way back to Savannah for the third time.

The seasoned cast and crew at Bay Street Theatre are providing the perfect pre-holiday opportunity to experience the audaciously entertaining production of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” before Neil Patrick Harris dons the titular blond wig and struts onto the Great White Way.

Directed by Christopher Stanley and starring Christopher Blair as the acerbic and quick-witted Hedwig, this cult classic is backed by a stellar supporting cast and crew and is sure to bring out anyone seeking some fabulously grungy — and surprisingly touching — fun.

IF YOU GO

What: “Hedwig and the Angry Inch”

When: 7:30 p.m. Nov. 21, 22, 23 and 24

Where: Bay Street Theatre, 1 Jefferson St.

Cost: $15 online/$20 at the door

Info: www.angryinch.org

The Savannah production will also inject its own regional and topical spin into the already hysterically irreverent script.

“There will definitely be some Paula Deen jokes,” Blair said with a laugh.

Though the show is opening after a gruelingly short rehearsal schedule, many of the cast and crew are returning players and already know the material intimately.

“I was shocked by how many of her monologues were still in my head,” Blair said of the stingingly funny rants that are peppered between the rock numbers in the show.

“Once you’ve done a show a couple of times, it’s easy to just slide right into it,” said bassist Benjamin Rafuse.

Even though it’s his first time at the helm as director for this particular production, for Christopher Stanley, it’s been more or less like riding a bike.

He’s held other roles in earlier stagings and has worked with much of the cast and crew on some of the Bay Street Theatre’s other productions — such as the recent “Rocky Horror Picture Show” — so he’s in a very comfortable place.

“We’ve gotten really good with some of these shows, tying it down to a fine point and maximizing our rehearsal time,” he said. “For the most part, it’s very relaxed. Chris (Blair) has already developed a character I really love and is well established, and everyone else brings what they already have to the production, so it’s pretty easy.”

The comfort and ease is evident, as a run-through of the songs recently proved. Everyone is clearly having a great time. And how could they not?

With musical numbers inspired by the likes of Lou Reed, David Bowie and Iggy Pop and a story that tells the universally relatable tale of heartbreak, disappointment and redemption, it’s nearly impossible to not be moved in some way.

“It’s basically a rock concert with a story intertwined,” Stanley said. “But there is definitely meaning behind this show.”

This production is also a perfect chance to check out the excitingly eclectic offerings of the Bay Street Theatre, since “Hedwig” is the type of show that can appeal to a broad range of audiences on a number of different levels.

“You can read the show on a deep philosophical level, or you can read the show as a cabaret style piece of camp,” Blair said.

Whatever the case, audiences are certainly in for a hilariously entertaining rock odyssey that promises to leave everyone singing to themselves long after they’ve left the theater.

 

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