“Urinetown: The Musical” full of goodwill

Taylor Harrison

Lexington junior Taylor Harrison is a self-proclaimed “Theater nerd.” She’s taken theater classes at WKU and spent the summer in New York City, seeing Broadway shows.

Although it’s strange name might make people skeptical, “Urinetown: The Musical” is a hilarious play. Even though it’s about a revolution and has a political message, it doesn’t seem heavy because it’s so much fun.

The play is about a town where the people have to pay to use public bathrooms — and it’s against the law to go in the bushes. But the citizens decide they have had enough and it’s time for a change. The play is exciting and doesn’t have a dull moment. Even in the serious scenes — and things do get serious — there is usually some form of comic relief to underscore the drama.

London sophomore Whitley Lawson, who was in the audience, said she didn’t know what to expect from the title, but she was pleasantly surprised.

“I loved it,” Lawson said. “It was very exciting. I love musicals and everyone in the play could sing so it made it that much better.”

The acting in the play is great, but it’s the singing and dancing that really makes it. Sarah Hall, who plays Hope, the daughter of the rich man who restricts the town’s toilet use, has an incredible voice. Her solos are some of the best parts of the show.

Cory Hardin plays Cladwell, the man who oppresses the townspeople and he makes an excellent villain. He was definitely one of the standout actors of the show.

Lockstock was another character who stole the show. Played by Caleb Pless, his Lockstock character narrated the show. While narrating he talks directly to the audience, making comments that remind the audience they are watching a musical and even refers to what’s about to happen in the next scene or act. He was one of the funniest people in the show and provides a lot of comic relief. 

Another audience member, Mount Vernon sophomore Sydney Arvin said she liked the audience interaction.

“They definitely broke the fourth wall,” Arvin said. “I really liked that. It kept the audience, I think, interested more and entertained more.”

The songs in Urinetown are really funny and sometimes exaggerated. They include lines about how it’s a privilege to pee and one woman refers to taking baths in a coffee cup, due to a water shortage from a severe drought that happened prior to the play’s start.

Even the costumes contribute a lot to the overall theme of the play. The poor characters wear sweaters with holes in them and dirty socks, while the rich wear dresses and suits. Since the play focuses a lot on class warfare, the costumes are a subtle way of reminding the audience of the distinction. 

Russellville junior Kyle Townsend said because of the title, he didn’t think the play would be as good as it was and didn’t know what to expect, but he ended up liking it.  

“I thought it was really good,” Townsend said. “It was funny and it had a good message about how the world can be corrupt.”

All the elements of the play come together to create a really fun play to watch. It is definitely worth going to see for the few days it will be playing in Russell Miller Theatre. The show will continue running from Friday to Tuesday. All shows are at 8 p.m., except Sunday’s show which is at 3 p.m.