The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals

The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals is a horror comedy musical with music and lyrics by Jeff Blim and a book by Matt and Nick Lang. It is the 11th staged show produced by StarKid Productions. The show ran from October 11, 2018 to November 4, 2018 at the Matrix Theater in Los Angeles, California. A recording of the musical was uploaded to YouTube on December 24, 2018.

Funding for the show was done through Kickstarter, similarly to StarKid's most recent shows. The project raised $127,792 USD through 3,419 backers out of its $60,000 goal.[1]

Synopsis

Act 1

A group of singing zombies address the audience, setting the scene in the tiny town of Hatchetfield and introducing the main character, unremarkable everyman Paul Matthews. ("The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals").

Paul's day begins as any other, as he works dutifully at a nondescript office job alongside his coworkers: obnoxious womanizer Ted, sweet but unstable Charlotte, and Paul's closest friend, Bill. Charlotte has a phone conversation with her husband Sam, a police officer who dismisses her many attempts at affection. Bill invites Paul to come see a touring production of Mamma Mia! with him and his teenage daughter, Alice, with whom Bill feels he must make an effort to connect after his divorce with his wife. Paul declines, stating that he would "rather do anything" than go see a musical.

Paul goes to the local coffee shop, Beanie's, where he befriends Emma Perkins, a cute barista who shares his hatred for musicals. As he leaves the coffee shop, he is accosted by an activist from Greenpeace, who tries to solicit a donation from him. Their conversation is cut off by a rapidly approaching storm, which alarms townspeople all over Hatchetfield. Charlotte, although cheating on her husband with Ted, fears for Sam's safety; Bill's daughter Alice takes refuge with her girlfriend Deb; and a mysterious man, Professor Hidgens, reacts in awe and horror at his predictions coming to fruition.

The next morning, on his way to work, Paul encounters a group of singing and dancing people on the street, led by the Greenpeace girl he met the day before. The singers recall their past lives and express their newfound happiness through song and dance ("La Dee Dah Dah Day"). Paul, deeply disturbed, arrives at work, where Bill complains that the performance of Mamma Mia was canceled after a meteor hit the theatre. Charlotte expresses concern about her husband singing in the shower, an uncommon occurrence. Just as Paul, horrified, begins to connect the dots, he is called into the boss's office. He gives excuses, thinking his boss Mr. Davidson is unsatisfied with his work, but Davidson cuts him off, suddenly bursting into song to ask Paul about his objective in life ("What Do You Want, Paul?"). Scared by yet another incident of inexplicable singing, Paul runs out under the pretense of getting coffee. He arrives at Beanie's, where he confides in Emma that he is worried the world may have turned into a musical overnight. Emma, not convinced, excuses herself to sing a tip song with her coworkers ("Cup of Roasted Coffee"). After discovering that they added "a whole 'nother B section" to the choreography without her knowledge, she quits in exasperation. The customers suddenly begin to cough and choke, whereupon the baristas reveal that they have poisoned the coffee. The customers transform into musical zombies and join the baristas in a song ("Cup of Poisoned Coffee"), chasing Paul and Emma out of the shop.

Paul and Emma meet Bill, Charlotte, and Ted in an alleyway, where they learn that people all over town have inexplicably begun to sing and dance. Charlotte reveals that she has called Sam, who arrives singing and dancing. He and his fellow officers, all musical zombies at this point, harass Paul and his friends until Ted hits Sam over the head and knocks him out ("Show Me Your Hands"). Emma proposes that they seek help from her biology professor, "doomsday survivalist" Professor Hidgens.

The group arrives to Hidgens' compound, where he reveals that he has been preparing for this exact doomsday scenario for decades. He tells them that the blue goo found on Sam's skull is the result of an alien invasion and ties the unconscious Sam to a chair for the group's safety. When Sam comes to, he begs Charlotte to untie him, professing his love to her through song and reminding her of their lives before their marriage fell apart. She is unconvinced, until he fakes his death, causing her to free him ("You Tied Up My Heart"). He then attacks her, ripping out her guts.

Meanwhile, Emma and Paul become closer, Emma revealing that after her sister's death, she promised herself that she would not die in Hatchetfield. Their conversation is interrupted by Charlotte, now a musical zombie as well, and Sam, who attack Paul ("Join Us (And Die)"). Just in time, Professor Hidgens returns, shooting and killing both of them.

Bill receives a phone call from Alice, who is still at school. Bill instructs her to hide until he can come get her. Although Ted tells him it's a lost cause, Paul decides to join Bill on his rescue mission.

Act 2

At the high school, Paul and Bill search for Alice as Bill panics that he is to blame for her situation. Paul tries to reassure him that he's wrong, but is interrupted by Alice, now infected as well. Alice sings, telling Bill that her death was indeed his fault and he was never a good father ("Not Your Seed"). Bill, heartbroken, attempts to kill himself with the shotgun they brought to defend themselves, but Paul stops him and tosses it aside. While Paul is busy comforting Bill, Alice picks up the shotgun and shoots and kills him. Right as she is about to attack Paul, the army arrives, scaring her away and knocking Paul out.

Back at Professor Hidgens' compound, Hidgens explains the nature of the alien invasion to Emma, describing it as a hivemind. Although Emma realizes how to stop its spread, Hidgens is excited by the peace and unity of a hivemind society and decides to take the aliens' side, tranquilizing Emma. Meanwhile, Paul wakes up and is greeted by General McNamara, who works with a special unit of the US Army called PEIP. McNamara tells him that if he is able to rescue Emma, the army will have a helicopter come pick them up.

Emma wakes up, tied to a chair with Ted. Hidgens opens the gate to the compound, claiming that the only way humans will be saved from themselves is if they let the alien invasion continue. He then goes on to reveal that he has a history in musical theater, much to the dismay of Emma and Ted. He purposely attracts the aliens by singing, including the opening number of a musical he has been working on called Working Boys, where he reminisces about his days with his friends in undergrad ("Show-Stoppin' Number"). His singing attracts the zombies, though he is now too far gone to realize this and thinks that they are his college friends. The zombies join in his song before dragging him off and killing him.

Paul arrives to rescue Emma and Ted and they immediately head for the pickup site, but the zombies catch up to them and drag off Paul. Emma tries to save him but Ted keeps running. He makes it to the pickup site and is greeted by PEIP, who have also been infected. McNamara shoots and infects Ted before beginning to sing ("America Is Great Again"). Paul and Emma manage to make it to the helicopter after Emma shoots McNamara in the arm and get on. However, they realize that the pilot is Emma's infected coworker when she begins to sing and pulls a gun on them. The resulting fight causes the helicopter to crash. A piece of rebar ends up in Emma's leg. She tells him to leave her behind and go destroy the meteor to end the invasion. He reluctantly leaves her and takes a grenade belt along with him.

Several zombies once again address the audience through song ("Let Him Come"), where they pass on the word that the star of the show, Paul, is making his way to the meteor. Paul enters the local theater, the site of the meteor crash, and is greeted by the reanimated bodies of everyone he lost along the way. They tell him that they are happy now, and that if he destroys the meteor he will also die. They ask what he wants, to which he replies that it does not matter. The zombies, however, disagree. They begin to sing, telling him that they feel there is a song in him, and to his horror, his proximity to the meteor causes him to sing and dance against his will. Paul begins to switch between singing and talking, fighting for control against the infection. He manages to pull the pin on a grenade and throw it at the meteor, yelling that he doesn't like musicals ("Let It Out").

A newscast from the neighboring town of Clivesdale states that it has been two weeks since the events of the show. Emma is in a hospital in Clivesdale and is greeted by Colonel Schaffer, a PEIP agent, who has set up a new life and identity for her. Schaffer tells her that there were no other survivors, but that she will be escorted to her new life by a Ben Bridges, who Emma apparently knows well. Ben enters, and reveals himself to be Paul. Emma and Paul embrace before Paul begins to sing, telling her she lost. He is joined by other zombies and they sing a medley of previous songs in the show and implore her to join them. They tell her the ending is "inevitable" and surround and drag her off stage ("Inevitable").

Roles

Cast

Character Actor/Actress
Paul Matthews Jonathan Matteson
Emma Perkins Lauren Lopez
Ted Joey Richter
Charlotte Jaime Lyn Beatty
Bill Corey Dorris
Alice / Zoey Mariah Rose Faith
Professor Henry Hidgens Robert Manion
Mr. Davidson / Sam / General McNamara Jeff Blim

Note: All actors besides Jonathan Matteson played additional ensemble roles.

Characters

  • Paul Matthews, a guy who doesn't like musicals and unsure of what he wants in life. He has a crush on Emma.
  • Emma Perkins, a barista who is going back to school.
  • Ted, the office asshole.
  • Charlotte, a woman in a failing marriage to Sam
  • Bill, a divorced father trying to connect to his teenaged daughter, Alice
  • Alice, a teenage girl who is caught between her parents' divorce and facing the struggles of growing up
  • Zoey, a bratty teenage girl who is working as a barista and also dabbles in musical theater. Also has an affair with Sam
  • Professor Henry Hidgens, one of Emma's teachers at her community college and doomsday survivalist
  • Mr. Davidson, boss of Paul, Ted, Charlotte and Bill
  • Sam, Charlotte’s husband, an unfaithful police officer
  • General McNamara, an army man that tries to help Paul

Crew

Crew member[2] Job
Nick Lang Producer, Director
Ilana Elroi Sound Design, Engineering
Brian Rosenthal Sound Design
Corey Lubowich Scenic Design, Producer
Amy Plouff Senic Charge
Sarah Petty Lighting Design
June Saito Costume Design
Jade Svenson Wardrobe/Deck Hand
Paul Gabriel Stage Manager
Matt Dahan Music Direction, Keyboard 1
Josh Fleury Bass
Sam Johnides Guitar, Keyboard 2
Ryan McDiarmid Drum

Musical numbers

A cast recording was released on December 24, 2018.

Critical reception

The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals received generally positive reviews from local publications.[3][4] The musical also has an 8.5/10 rating on IMDb.

References

  1. ^ "The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals - A StarKid Horror-Comedy!". Kickstarter. Retrieved 2019-10-08.
  2. ^ a b c "The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals". StarKid Productions. Retrieved 2019-05-30.
  3. ^ "Youtube Musical Review: 'The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals' is hilarious, horrifying in its underlying message – The Lafayette". www.lafayettestudentnews.com. Retrieved 2019-06-05.
  4. ^ Jan. 9, Emily Worrell / 6:34 p m; 2019. "Starkid's 'The Guy Who Didn't Like Musicals' is campy in the best way". Ball State Daily. Retrieved 2019-06-05.

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