Theater, City Picks

Reefer Madness: The Hit Musical

When: Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m. and Sun., July 12, 5 p.m. Continues through July 18 2009

“My son was the one who first found the show,” says Sheri Grace Wenger, executive producer of Midtown/Sheri Grace Productions. “I don’t think I ever would have found something like this, but once I learned what it was really about, I was intrigued.” On its surface the play’s focus seems to be just what the title suggests (mar-i-juan-a, for those unfamiliar with the pot-smoking lingo), but at its core the show also aims to shed light on intolerance, brainwashing, and powerful people advancing their own agendas. One such bomb the play drops on its perhaps unenlightened crowd is about how William Randolph Hearst — the power hungry newspaper man who invented yellow journalism — started the anti-marijuana campaign in an effort to extinguish paper’s main competitor, hemp. Wenger adds that her son chose the play not just for its generational appeal, but because the message behind it was so insightful and profound, and delivered in a delightfully entertaining way. The songs may just seem like campy little ditties that the actors sing while prancing around the stage, but the crafty lyrics are where you can find the real zest of the play (“Creeping like a communist/ it’s knocking at our doors/ turning all our children into hooligans and whores” goes a few lines from the opening song). In the continued spirit of advancing tolerance, the people at the Playhouse will be offering reduced ticket prices to the pro-legalizing marijuana group, NORML, as well as the Alliance for Full Acceptance. —Allie Rice

Allie Rice

Price: $25/adults and seniors, $20/students with ID

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