WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 28
The Halloween weekend presentation of “Bat Boy: The Musical” flies into Oklahoma City University this weekend with late night showtimes, a wicked comic sense and a lovable but flawed title character.
Inspired by a tabloid story about the discovery of a half boy/half vampire bat, The New York Times calls the show “a tongue-in-cheek Gothic morality tale bent on revealing the bat in all of us,” an imaginative mix of skewering and self-puncturing humor.
OCU’s “Bat Boy” will be presented 10:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30, 3 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 31, and 8 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 1. All tickets are $10; 405.208.5227. Drawings will be held at each show for an iPod nano with video camera or an iPod shuffle.
Performances are in the intimate Burg Theater at the Bass School of Music on the OCU campus, NW 25th Street and Blackwelder.
The Vulcan-eared, pointy-teethed title role is shared by Colin Anderson, a 2008 graduate of Putnam City North, and Thomas Stewart, originally from Texarkana, Texas.
The show premiered at the Actors Gang Theater in 1997 and was awarded a 2001 Outer Critics’ Circle Award for best Off-Broadway musical.
The music is tuneful, with harmonically inventive duets. It satirizes Broadway schmaltz and embraces and sends up contemporary culture. The story and book are by Americans Keythe Farley and Brian Flemming; music and lyrics by Laurence O'Keefe. The plot involves a town once dependent on coal mining trying to make a comeback; a sheriff up for re-election; one family bent on vengeance, another with deep emotional rifts; a revival meeting; and a title character addicted to drinking blood.
Bat Boy yearns for acceptance and tries to join society, only to face hatred and violence from a fearful town and jealousy from his foster father. The themes of hypocrisy, acceptance, forgiveness and revenge are laced by slapstick, surrealism, and camp-horror.
His education is shown in a sweeping musical number that fondly pokes fun at Henry Higgins and Eliza Doolittle and ends with the newly christened Edgar speaking in a British accent – "it’s totally 'My Fair Vampire,'" said director David Herendeen. A later scene between Edgar and his teenaged love manages, in a riotous mishmash, to invoke the Book of Genesis, Greek myth, Dracula, Shakespeare and ''The Lion King.''
OCU continues the 2009-10 season of its Oklahoma Opera and Music Theater Company Nov. 20-22 with an English translation of the Strauss operetta “Die Fledermaus.” Tickets are available from 405.208.5227.