The Book of Mormon opened to a sold-out audience in Indianapolis this week and it continues that rare status throughout its run at Old National Centre. In fact, the only thing that surprises me is Broadway in Indy didn't realize its potential and originally schedule more shows or add on performances.
There are shows which are carried by the story line and writing quality; others by the sheer talent of the performers. Then there are those that bring IT from the talents of every factor: acting, directing, writing, music, choreography ~ all of it comes together to bring the show to the elite status of a must-see show. The Book of Mormon accomplishes that and more...it was a pure delight to watch. The entire audience was rocking with laughter all night as the top-quality performers burst from their seams with energy, enjoyment and rock-solid talent.
There is no way to fit all the names that should be in this review, unfortunately, as they do deserve mentioned.
I will not put out a spoiler with the plot, but know if you (and who hasn't) have had one too many pairs of Mormons approach your door with that zealous speech ready to give you help in finding their religion, you will be howl with laughter at this Broadway phenomenon and Nine-time Tony award winner.
Christopher John O'Neill EXPLODES onto the stage with all the enthusiasm of a 10-foot, 400 pound orangutan and the adorability factor of the entire Little Rascals Gang. Brilliantly portraying Elder Cunningham, positive of what he is spouting one moment then flipping to the clueless way he actually feels underneath then immediately transforming into a child needing love and attention (lots of both) ~ O'Neill sets a level of energy that would require the average person a dozen highly caffeinated drinks to accomplish. It is no doubt this will not be O'Neill's last professional stage performance, although it was a complete shock to find out this was his debut.
Elder Price, the new recruit who believes he is incredible and meant for greatest of all things, like living in Orlando, is portrayed by Mark Evan. Evan is able to convey a vulnerability within the pompous attitude of his character who believes that he is a higher quality Mormon than all of his counterparts and ready to excel at being No.1. His insecurity shows when he finds himself out of element and not the wonder recruit he believed himself to be.
Bottom Line: If you didn't catch Broadway Across America's The Book of Mormon
this week in Indianapolis, well, may God ~ or Joseph Smith ~ have mercy on your soul.
Images: Broadway in Indy
Elizabeth J. Musgrave writes two magazine food and wine columns: Destination Dining and White Linen & Corks,and is a travel, features, food and wine writer, travel and food photographer, and performing arts and restaurant critic. Catch her as the Travel & Leisure Adviser on FOX59 Morning News Show. She also is a speaker, consultant and trainer for businesses, media, P.R., and tourism groups, as well as a radio and television guest and host. Read Infused, her spirits, wine & beer lifestyle column, at www.GottaGo.us and www.FoodDigital.com. Follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook.