Something Rotten hits Orlando

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Set in the 1590’s in Renaissance England, Something Rotten is an amusing musical farce that sees the brothers Nick and Nigel Bottom desperate to write a hit play but unable to get past the close presence of “The Bard.” 

Nick Bottom (Rob McClure) is wildly jealous of Britain’s most famous writer, William Shakespeare (Adam Pascal), who, we learn, got his start as an actor in Nick’s troupe. His brother and writing partner, Nigel (Josh Grisetti), is a hopelessly, awkwardly romantic poet who simply adores Shakespeare’s plays and this creates an entertaining and enjoyable environment for the play to develop. After something of a slow start, pressure begins to mount on the brothers as they are forced to scrap their Richard II play when they learn Shakespeare has something similar planned. Their patron demands a new idea and after many failures, Nick takes the last of his savings to soothsayer Thomas Nostradamus (Blake Hammond) in order to discover the next big thing in theatre. Meanwhile Nick’s supportive and optimistic wife Bea (Maggie Lakis) has resorted to collecting cabbage thrown at debtors in the stocks and then decides to take a lowly job in a man’s world. This proves a constant source of amusement throughout.

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Nostradamus advises Nick that the next big thing in theatre is the musical, which leads to the show stopping number, “A Musical,” as Hammond is forefront to an hilarious riot as he moves into the future with sly and humorous references to Les Miserables, Pippin, Rent, The Lion King, Annie, Phantom of the Opera, West Side Story, Chicago and even The Producers (cleverly making a musical parody of a musical parody at one point).

Nigel then meets and falls in love with a poetry-loving Puritan, Portia (Autumn Hurlbert), whose father forbids her to see him ever again. Nick and Nigel are still having no luck with producing a new show, so Nick visits Nostradamus again to find out what Shakespeare’s greatest success will be. Nostradamus delightfully misinterprets his vision to mean “omelet” rather than “Hamlet”, so Nick sets out to write a musical based on breakfast – “Omelette, the Musical.”

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Something Rotten! has something for everyone and while it’s not essential to know a lot about Shakespearean writing to enjoy the show, the more you know the more you’ll discover. Peppered with sexual innuendo, clever Shakespearean references and nods to several Broadway musicals it will still capture the hearts of those who miss some of the content with its colorful costumes, dazzling lighting, and energetic tap numbers.

Created by Tony Award nominees John O’Farrell and Karey Kirkpatrick, directed and choreographed by Tony Award winner Casey Nicholaw (The Book of Mormon, Mean Girls), with music and lyrics by Grammy Award winner and Tony Award nominee Wayne Kirkpatrick and Golden Globe Award and Tony Award nominee Karey Kirkpatrick, the show runs through to Sunday April 29th at Orlando’s Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.

‘Something Rotten!’

  • Where: Dr. Phillips Center, 445 S. Magnolia Ave., Orlando
  • When: 8 p.m. through Friday, April 27; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, April 28; 1 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday, April 29
  • Cost: $34.25 and up
  • Call: 844-513-2014
  • Online: drphillipscenter.org

 

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