Book of Mormon returns to Kennedy Center
By Connie Lawn, June 20, 2015
I will never look at Mormon missionaries the same way, the next time they come to my door. I know they are not like the ones in the Tony award winning show. In some ways, that is too bad -- the actors in the show sing and dance with great skill, energy, power and enthusiasm. But some of them are a bit weird, as they struggle over issues of faith, relationships, rules and sexuality. Ultimately, faith appears to win out, as dramatized in the powerful show stopping song, "I believe." There were several other wonderful songs, but the audience could not walk out of the Kennedy Center singing them, unless they knew the words first. And some of the words you would not want to sing in public! Others were simply hard to understand -- defeated by the extra loud music.
The show won nine Tony Awards. It is worth it for the high caliber of the singing, dancing, costumes and staging.
To prepare yourself for Book of Mormon, watch a few cartoons of "South Park" on Comedy Central t.v. They are funny, clever, vulgar and meant to offend everyone. Their writers are the creators of Book of Mormon. Millions of people love them -- I am still shocked by it. There is so much to find offensive in the show, a warning is even printed on the tickets. It says "Parental Advisory: Explicit Language." They are not kidding -- I believe this would have an R rating if it were a movie.
On the subject of tickets, many can still be bought for the run which goes until August 16. It is almost sold out, but not completely. The tickets come in a variety of prices.
There was, ironically, a tragic note to the Book of Mormon the night we saw it. It was one day after the murder of nine black worshippers, by a white supremacist, in a South Carolina Church. Like the play, the murders dealt with issues of violence, mistrust, hatred and faith. But in Charleston, death was final and there was no happy ending.