Like Natty Lite, ‘Trailer Park Musical’ is frothy and sure to leave you with a buzz
Wed, Jul 18, 2012 (6:42 p.m.)
Mix aestheticism with an ice cold Natty Lite, and you might just come up with The Great American Trailer Park Musical, a production as frothy and light as that beer, guaranteed to leave you with a pleasant buzz. At the Armadillo Acres trailer park Vicky Best, Kim Glover and Jennifer King act as a Greek white-trash chorus, sharing the story of Norbert Garstecki (played by Scott Caster), who takes up with new-in-town stripper Pippi (Caitlin Shea) after 20 years of living with agoraphobic wife Jeannie (Kelly Ward). Rounding out the cast is Eric “Travis” Wilson, as Pippi’s spurned boyfriend Duke.
- The Great American Trailer Park Musical
- Through July 29; Thu-Sat, 8 p.m.; Sun, 2 p.m.; $20-$25
- Las Vegas Little Theatre, 362-7996
Director Troy Heard pushed the cast not to hold anything back, and the actors all show great verve in finding their inner imbecile: King and Shea shine in “The Great American TV Show,” a Jerry Springer spoof that takes timing and good vocals; Ward and the chorus deliver in a song about a broken heart, “Flushed Down the Pipes;” and Wilson slays in “Road Kill.” In fact, Wilson sparks whenever he’s on stage, not just stealing his scenes but racing away with them like a meth addict in a boosted car.
The band played with precision and vigor under musical director Toby McEvoy. It’s not their fault that the audio mixer seemingly had no idea what he was doing. The first half of the show you could hardly hear the singers above the music, and even though the second half of the show sounded better, mic pops kept booming through the system like gunshots.
Betsy Kelso’s book and David Nehls’ songs so assiduously avoid any attempts at sincerity, they arrive at it through the sheer intensity of their ludicrousness. It’s hard to imagine a world where, “I’m gonna make like a nail, and press on,” actually works as a sincere lyric of heartbreak, but Nehls wants that world to exist, and for the 90 minutes of The Great American Trailer Park Musical, you will too.