PETER LINZ     STEPHANIE D'ABRUZZO     JORDAN GELBER     ANN HARADA
RICK LYON     NATALIE VENETIA BELCON     JENNIFER BARNHART

 

 

THE PLOT

Princeton arrives at Avenue Q looking for a purpose and an apartment. Once there he meets the lovely Kate Monster and they both fall in love, but a slut singer named Lucy threats their relationship. In the meantime, Rod and Nicky, two friends who live together, also have problems; Rod is a closeted gay and when he discovers that Nicky knows his secret he kicks him out of his apartment. And let’s not forget the unemployed Brian and his bride Christmas Eve, the mysterious Trekkie Monster and the once famous and rich Gary Coleman.
PUPPETS AND ACTORS

The puppets are terrific and give the ones from THE LION KING a run for their money. They look and sound so real that it’s impossible not caring for their delicious characters. Of course they wouldn’t exist if a cast of fabulous actors didn’t give life to them.

On the day I saw it John Tartaglia was out, so I saw Peter Linz instead and let me tell you that he was amazing in the dual roles of Princeton and Rod. Stephanie D’Abruzzo was simple fantastic as the naïve Kate Monster or as the sexual bomb Lucy. In fact everyone was terrific, but the big surprise was Ann Harada, who as Christmas Eve stole every scene she’s in and sings the best song of the show – “The More You Ruv Someone”.
THE SCORE

A few years ago we had THE PRODUCERS, than URINETOWN, now it’s time for another political incorrect score. Who would have thought that a puppet musical would deliver such a winning score? But the fact is that Robert Lopez & Jeff Marx songs are among the best Broadway have heard in years.

Among the highlights we have the cheerful “It Sucks to Be Me”, the hilarious “The Internet Is for Porn”, the funny “Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist” and the beautiful torch song with a twist “The More You Ruv Someone”, sang in Judy Garland mode by the comical Ann Harada.

THE SHOW

Imagine a political incorrect soap opera with humor and puppets and you have the incense of AVENUE Q, a really original new musical. The set is simple, the costumes aren’t glamorous, there aren’t special effects and not even a big star name, so what are the buzz and the awards all about? The answer is very simple: an ingenious funny book, a perfect cast and a hummable score.

This is a musical with a big heart and no pretensions. Its creators came up with a simple little musical that relies mainly on the book and in the cast, there aren’t spectacular stunts or big productions numbers here.

It doesn’t matter how old you are, which race you belong or even what are your sexual preferences, its humor it’s universal and everyone gets it. This may not be for everyone’s taste, when it gets dirty it’s really dirty (the song about the net and the sex sequence between Princeton and Kate Monster come to mind), but I doubt someone will be offended by it and at the end what really matters it’s the fact that this is a great piece of entertainment.

When you leave the theatre you’ll find yourself humming one or more of the songs and that’s a rarity in new musicals.

 

 

music and lyrics by
ROBERT LOPEZ & JEFF MARX

 

book by
JEFF WHITTY


puppets conceived and designed by

RICK LYON

directed by
JASON MOORE

 

Photos © Carol Rosegg

Rated by Jorge: ++++