Make no mistake about it.
It's about sex.
Sex addictions. Sex fetishes. Sex in every way, fashion and style you could imagine.
The Indy Fringe Festival's popular show states it boldly in the title, 465: Sex Drive...a musical. So no one mistakenly shows up with children for a performance about Indianapolis' loop around the city, perhaps? During the carpool trip around the city's loop and throughout a therapy session for the five sex addicts, streets, neighborhoods and parks are mentioned as great places for various sexual encounters.
Where the idea came from... who knows?
Somehow ~ someway ~ this script, written by Kenny Shepard, Ty Stover and Sharla Steiman, originated, materialized and became a stage production at the annual Indianapolis event.
And, somehow ~ someway ~ it works.
In fact, it works really, really well.
Don't believe me? Maybe you'll believe the packed house...on a Tuesday night. Yes, a full house on a Tuesday at 9 p.m. And that crowd was laughing hysterically, applauding and cheering throughout the performance from Red Boat Productions.
Because it is that hilarious.
What coulda, shoulda, woulda been yet one more attempt at raucous humor, another mediocre stab at a group discussing their sexual hangups, a yet-again glimpse into people's secretive sexual fantasies was a well performed musical that just happened to be about...sex.
Get the difference?
I did. And so did the audience. Where a lesser talented writer(s) might have failed at weaving a full circle of needy individuals in a sex addiction group, Shepard, et al., created a group of vulnerable, believable characters who rejoiced in being sexually active. Really sexually active. And bared their souls in a tender, somewhat soulful way in order to find the one key that would transform them into the someone they wanted to be.
As they connect, tear each other apart, and then help one another mend, the group finds they are all fallible, human and not so bad.
The entire cast, including Erin Cohenour, Matthew Goodrich, Danny Kingston, Amanda Lawson (Joseph...Dreamcoat), Laura Lockwood (Cinderella) and Clay Mabbitt, works as a team that has been together for a longer time than is actual.
Stepping into the Gotta Go Spotlight is Kingston. What is it about Danny Kingston? I have no idea except that every single time I have reviewed a show in which he performs ~ he stands out and shines.
Whether as an evil troublemaker in Beef and Boards Dinner Theatre's "Camelot", or in The Phoenix Theare's "Spring Awakenings," Kingston fully immerses himself into the character and you cease thinking about what a good actor he is and relate to him as, in this case, an emotionally messed up endearing guy who has a bit of impishness pop out between his tales of woe and need for attention. Just a regular guy with a sex-with-strangers addiction.
And the "...a musical" part? Seven songs full of emotions were written by Lynn Lupold (music and lyrics) and Ron Spencer (lyrics). "Hide & Seek," performed by Kingston, and "Too Many Mornings," a duet sung by Kingston and Lockwood leaves you wanting even more of the musical part.
Bottom Line: Thanks to 465: Sex Drive..a musical, (a must-see of Indy Fringe Festival 2012), I will never think of 465 and Binford Boulevard in the same way ever, ever again and maybe, just maybe, that's a good thing.
Next viewing times are:
Thursday, August 23, 7:30 pm
Saturday, August 25, 7:30 pm
Sunday August 26, 4:30 pm
Image submitted by Red Boat Productions
Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated fine-living, travel columnist, freelance writer, and performing arts and restaurant critic. Read her new column, Infused, at GottaGo.us and FoodandDrinkDigital.com and catch her as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC. Gotta Go is published on Gottago.us, BroadwayWorld.com, in M and Retired Living magazines and several Indianapolis area newspapers. Follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook.