Sunday, May 23, 2010

It sucks to be me

You know what doesn't suck? Avenue Q. I've owned the CD of the original cast recording for years, but I've never seen the actual show before. I remedied that yesterday while the current tour was in town at the Cobb Energy Centre. Nice venue, by the way. I especially appreciated the vents under each seat, because it got hot in there once the room filled up.

For those unfamiliar with Avenue Q, imagine an R-rated Sesame Street. Same mix of human and puppet characters, but they're all adults dealing with adult issues. Oh, and there's a bit of puppet sex in there as well. The cast for the current tour is amazing, but I thought Jacqueline Grabois (Kate Monster and Lucy the Slut), Lisa Helmi Johanson (Christmas Eve), and Nigel Jamaal Clark (Gary Coleman) stood out. Ms. Johanson especially, since I really have to respect anyone playing the role of Christmas Eve. Maintaining the deliberately terrible engrish for 2+ hours can't be easy.

I'm generally not a fan of musicals, but Avenue Q hits all the right notes. It skillfully parodies a fixture of my youth, doesn't take itself seriously, and the songs are catchy as hell. After seeing the show and revisiting the original cast recording this morning, I'd have to say my current favorite songs are "There's a Fine, Fine Line", "Schadenfreude", and "For Now". I can't say any of the songs are bad though, and my favorites change nearly every time I listen to the entire set.

Avenue Q video response to this Muppet video.

Sidenote: I am never going to this sort of show solo again. I figured it would be like going to a movie; most people in groups, but a fair number of people on their own. Not so. I have never felt so conspicuously alone in my life. I didn't have much of a choice this time, since I didn't realize Avenue Q would be in town until the last minute. I simply lacked time to coordinate with my friends. I'll know better than to allow that to happen next time.

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