Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

Arts/Entertainment

November 15, 2012

AHS actors to perform clever, intellectual show

Less than two weeks after the presidential election and more than a year of watching television with all the political advertisements that came with it, Andover High School is staging a popular Broadway show that makes a satirical comedy out of the country’s political system.

“Urinetown: The Musical,” a Tony-award winner, pokes fun at anything American government related - like the legal system, capitalism, social irresponsibility, populism, bureaucracy, corporate mismanagement and even local politics.

The post-election timing is just a coincidence, said drama director Susan Choquette.

“The post election timing is a happy accident. I would have done this play this year anyway, but I love how incredibly relevant this piece is to the presidential election we have all lived through,” she said. She also said the group of teen actors staging this show are like Barack Obama and Mitt Romney - a good fit for their respective parties.

“We’ve never done a musical quite like this. This is a ‘head’ musical - intellectual, clever. This is a thoughtful group of actors and it was a good match,” Choquette said. “The students in the Drama Guild are a sophisticated group of students. They know theater and they are energized by the process of researching a piece like this.”

She said 48 AHS teens will be on stage, and another 25 students are involved backstage or are assistant directors.

The small pit orchestra with piano, bass, drums, woodwinds and trombone will help tell this comedic story. The show even pokes fun at Broadway musicals as an art form.

But, if you are looking for a winner at the end of this story, like every election has, forget about it.

“The ending of this play is murky. Nobody really wins. It’s much more true to life and different then the ending of most musical plays,” Choquette said.

URINETOWN: THE MUSICAL Andover High School Drama Guild Collins Center for the Performing Arts, on the right side of Andover High School, Shawsheen Road Nov. 15, 16, 17 at 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 18 at 2 p.m. Tickets online at ticketpeak.com/ahs, at the door, or by calling the box office at 978-623-8666

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