Review: Urinetown

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If you thought a musical with the title Urinetown centered around the right to pee couldn’t get any weirder, you would be very surprised after seeing Mr. Dema’s latest theater program. Urinetown, although an unexpected concept for a musical, was a very captivating performance, combining sarcastic comedy with sudden but entertaining twists. With that added to a terrific array of songs paired with lively choreography–it was easy to be impressed by the cast’s performance. 

Urinetown isn’t your standard musical. It takes a very unusual idea, and builds on it from there, adding spontaneous romance scenes, dramatic rivalries, and witty banter. At the same time, it captivates the audience with its interesting characters who endure many changes as the story progresses. 

Its follows the simple question: “What if you had to pay a price to pee?” As the story unravels, you can see that there’s actually a lot more to it. It starts at the poorest urinal in town, where the locals are forced to pay Penelope Pennywise (Caroline Terrell ‘20) to simply go to the bathroom. A few times we see the strange duo of a cop (Parker Gwin ‘20) and a small girl (Isabella Pardo ‘21) who break the fourth wall and have an entertaining chat about the musical itself. The two characters Bobby Strong (Noah Youmans ‘20)  and Hope Cladwell (Spencer Steele ‘21) play as our main characters, and eventually fight back against Hope’s dad, also known as Caldwell B. Cladwell: Urine Good Company’s evil president (Carson Buffalo ‘22).

Even while the story was still built around the right to pee, the dramatic acting and plot twists added so much flavor to a simple concept. It was obvious how much creativity was poured into all the scenes, and how many references it made to other musicals or plays. Hear it from the expert himself, Mr. Dema, who said it “has a wide array of references to other musicals, such as West Side Story, Threepenny Opera, and Fiddler on the Roof.” I asked Carson Buffalo about how the how the process went, and he admitted that it was “very time-consuming,” however, he concluded that it was well worth it and that “any good musical will take time.” 

If you were interested in seeing another Casady theater production, urine luck! Be sure to catch the Upper Division’s next production: Peter and the Starcatcher, coming next year!