Categorized | Arts & Entertainment

WAC to visit Playhouse Square for a showing of Kinky Boots

Lily Iserson

A&E Editor

Playhouse Square, a Cleveland-based theatre company, will showcase Kinky Boots, a heartwarming, highstepping musical tour-de-force, this Wednesday. College of Wooster students can attend the show thanks to an initiative on the part of the Wooster Activities Crew’s (WAC) Travel and Recreation committee, who will provide transportation to and from the theater for $15. Tickets can be purchased at the front desk in Lowry.

Kinky Boots’ tracks are harmonious, with spirited lyrics and groovy instrumental backdrops as the story of Charlie Price unfolds in modern day United Kingdom.

Charlie inherits his father’s shoe factory in the midst of the businesses’ economic straits. After a chance meeting with cabaret and drag star Lola, Charlie and Lola become fast friends; together they devise a scheme to restore the value of Charlie’s factory.

Lola and Charlie both confront the complexities of their business relationship in addition to the expectations of their fathers, lovers and their larger society.

The show focuses on character development, diverse interactions, economic hardship, family responsibility, drag culture and bold sentimentality; perfect for a lighthearted reprieve in the middle of a student’s stressful week, Kinky Boots promises a “high-heeled hit.”

The music of Kinky Boots features the talent of Harvey Fierstein (who previously acted as Edna Turnabad in Hairspray) and Cyndi Lauper, pop star of “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” fame, who was inspired by artists as varied as Lana Del Rey and Aaron Copeland. Its director, Jerry Mitchell, was previously known for his work on Hairspray and Legally Blonde — shows that share many thematic similarities with Kinky Boots.

While the musical was considered an underdog by Broadway standards, Kinky Books went on to win six Tony awards in 2013, including Best Musical and Best Score.

Ben Brantley, a prominent American theatre critic for The New York Times, favorably reviewed the show in a 2013 issue: “Like The Full Monty (choreographed by Mr. Mitchell) and Billy Elliot the Musical, it is set in a hard-times British factory town, where jobs are in jeopardy and spirits need lifting. Like La Cage aux Folles and Priscilla Queen of the Desert, it presents drag queens as the show’s official spirit lifters. And like Hairspray, the musical this production most resembles in tone, Kinky Boots is about finding your passion, overcoming prejudice and transcending stereotypes.”

Playhouse Square, a not-for-profit performing arts center, is located in a historic Cleveland arts district on Euclid Avenue, and remains the largest theater center outside New York City. This particular Kinky Boots showing includes many members of the original Broadway cast, as a part of KeyBank’s Broadway Series, and as seen in the Playbook, promises to “take you from a gentlemen’s shoe factory in Northampton to the glamorous catwalks of Milan.”

A bus will leave The College of Wooster’s campus from Babcock Hall at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 15. WAC reminds students to purchase tickets prior to departure time.

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