Hello! *waves energetically with one hand a creepy smile*
Yesterday I went to see The Book of Mormon, the tickets were a birthday present from my sister Shani earlier this year. She actually recommended it after seeing it in London. I found a few YouTube videos (not enough to ruin it) and knew it was something I HAD to see.
It’s a musical but unlike anything you may have seen before…
We meet a gathering of Mormon’s who have just finished their training. They are paired up and sent to different locations around the world to spread the word of Jesus Christ…of the Latter Day Saints. There’s a sense that these kids haven’t a clue about the world outside America. One of our main Characters, Elder Price, is hoping to get Orlando, however he and his companion, Elder Cunningham, are allocated Uganda.
They arrive and before long are presented with the horrific life being lived by the villagers…hasa diga eebowai*. They meet their other missionaries who have also been staying at the village and learn their coping mechanisms. They learn that their task of encouraging others to join the church will not be easy, there will be many challenges and their faith will be pushed to the limits.
I won’t say anymore than that as going into this story a little clueless (a bit like the Mormon characters) helps with the comedy. *Even the wording above, if you plan to see this musical try not to google it and instead allow Mafala and the villagers to explain it for you.
“I thought it was about God….“
“I heard it was offensive”
Ok so both those statements are loosely correct.
Firstly, there is the story of how the Mormon religion came about. I learnt about this in school and I remember myself and the rest of the class found it ridiculous. Yes the Church, God, Jesus etc are all in this musical but it’s far from religious.
As for offensive? It’s written by the creators of South Park. Do I really need to say anymore? If you’re easily offended, this musical is perhaps not for you. If you’re open minded and enjoy satire, then give it a go.
I think it’s pretty obvious that I enjoyed it. I have grown up with South Park (tv) as well as the South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut film and Team America: World Police (film).
The comedic timing was spot on, I feel I may have missed bits because it’s riddled with so many quick little lines to throw you off guard.
The songs are fantastic. I had already heard “Hello”, “I Believe” and “Turn it off”. In fact “Turn it off” was the song that made me decide I needed to see this show, it’s sung by the other missionaries in Uganda to explain their coping strategy and it’s hilarious. I’m glad I held back and didn’t listen to any more as seeing them delivered on stage is the best way to hear (and see) them.
Aside from the story there’s the talent. The singing is powerful, everything is done with comedy genius. The timing and volume always exactly where it should be.
Then there’s the dancing, particularly the Mormon cast, being dressed in such a restrictive manner but still move around the way they do is incredible. With both character types, the Ugandans and the Mormons, you see different styles of dance and it helps to show the stark contrast.
I would go see this again in a heartbeat! There’s a reason why it had a standing ovation yesterday.
The Book of Mormon is showing in Manchester (UK) until 24th August 2019