Out Front is a new theatre company styled as Atlanta’s LGBTQIA Theatre. Not sure Trump would figure out the acronym, but he is in favor of BLTs. But, before I plunge into any punny stuff, let me tell you that this is one incredible production with a fine cast, great costumes, full band on stage, and fine voices and choreography.
Priscilla started off as a film in 1994 and it won loads of praise, as it was right out front telling about some drag queens schlepping through the desert in Australia to get to Ayers Rock area, and how their bus, named Priscilla, breaks down, they meet up with some Aborigines, homophobes, and various sots along the way. The story gets movement from one of the queens who had been married and had a child, whom he’d not seen in years.
The musical is a delightful one with songs you will want to sing along or clap along with, such as I Will Survive, and many others. The facility is a black box theatre, so there are no expansive sets. The show is produced more like a cabaret, but is TOTALLY captivating.
The three drag queens are played by Justin Thompson, Robert Ray and Jason-Jamal Ligon. Michael Shikany plays Bob, the old guy mechanic who joins with them on the trip; and young Alex Hugg plays the son, Benji. What is really cool is that there are two dozen players, and more glitter than you would see at Macy’s for the holidays. Three divas who move the scenes along are Ally Duncan, Brianna Gilliam and Gia Nappo.
The idea of men coming onstage as women is hardly unique. In the days of The Bard every female role was played by a male; albeit probably not as well as some of these queens do. If this seems like an odd show to you, then be advised that it is not offensive, they’re not selling anything other than having respect for one another, and anybody can find total enjoyment in the story and the production.
Paul Conroy, who founded this new theatre has choreographed and directed the show and done a truly fine job. Bottom line is that if you want a really good few hours, with no political BS being spewed out at you, then go to their website and arrange tickets. More info at OutFrontTheatre.com