Guttenberg @ Gutenberg! The Musical!
Thanks to a post on the Apiary, I scored a couple of free tickets to last night's performance of Gutenberg! The Musical!, a hilarious Off-Broadway musical that originated at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater. It's pretty much a musical within a play about two guys making a musical about Johann Gutenberg's invention of the printing press in 1450. Sound unfunny? It's not. Before the show I didn't really know what to expect. I've kind of been spoiled by great improv and stand-up, and musicals aren't necessarily known for their groundbreaking comedy. But Gutenberg! The Musical! was amazing.
The show was presented in such an inventive way. The two characters are aspiring Broadway musical creators and they're reading the play through to the audience, so there are many asides that keep the show focused and interesting. They use barely any props: a squirt bottle for rain, a cardboard box with a sign reading "Printing Press", hats with different names on them to identify the characters (Gutenberg, Beef Fat Trimmer, Drunk #1). And I had really low expectations for the music and lyrics, but they were also top notch. There wasn't one bad song in the entire two acts, and many of the lyrics went unheard because the audience was laughing too hard.
I feel like I'm not doing this show justice. Just trust me. It's awesome. And if you don't trust my word, how about the word of Steve Guttenberg? That's right, he was at the show last night and he couldn't stop praising it. I met him after the show and he was ecstatic about how funny it was. And I know people say this about every celebrity, but he was really the nicest guy in the world. And hot. He looked younger than he did in the 80's. And he signed my copy of "Short Circuit." But I'm getting off track here. Gutenberg! The Musical! Run, don't walk!