Missionaries in Uganda - Book of Mormon (photo by Joan Marcus)
Missionaries in Uganda - The Book of Mormon (photo by Joan Marcus)

Musical lovers in Seattle are gnashing their teeth right now, as review after review mentions how great The Book of Mormon is, how funny, irreverent, and a must-see, and getting hold of tickets is like winning the lottery. Literally, the only tickets you can get are by entering a lottery each performance for a handful of $25 seats! (See previous CultureMob article here)

And CultureMob agrees with the above sentiments…more’s the pity.

Written by the South Park (television show and movie) creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, with help from Avenue Q (hysterical Broadway musical) creator Robert Lopez, you must expect lewd language including lots of “F” words and “C” words and, throughout a Lion King-esque song, Hasa Diga Eebo-ay, a whole cast of ensemble middle fingers in the air, as the Ugandans curse God.

An odd camp follower of the tour is the Mormon Church, itself. One might think that the Church would be angry at the fun poked at its missionary program, the strange-to-many beliefs in a god who lives on a specific planet – and promises to give other people planets of their own, a book written on gold plates that only founder Joseph Smith ever saw, and other practices. Some think that it means the Mormon Church has a sense of humor. Perhaps that is the correct answer.

Still, the Mormon Church is hoping you’ll actually read The Book of Mormon after seeing the show, and has been advertising to make sure you know where you should go for more information.

The current tour includes Mark Evans as the priggish Elder Price, who believes in what he has been told all his life, that Heavenly Father will give him what he wants if he’s been good enough – and that is to be a missionary in Orlando, Florida. Instead, Heavenly Father and the Church send him to Uganda, along with one of the most sorry-ass graduates of missionary school, Elder Cunningham.

Christopher John O’Neill is a tour-de-force standout as the schlubby, mistake-prone, lying missionary with a heart of gold Cunningham. It’s true that he can’t sing quite as well as some of the wonderful singers, but in every other aspect, he’s top notch. And his lack of great singing goes along with the character, anyway.

A heart-pleasing Nabulungi, a young Ugandan girl who is desperate to get out of the terrible conditions she lives in, is played by lovely Samantha Marie Ware. Another standout, a hysterical character who is passive-agressively homosexual and repressing it, Elder McKinley, is played by Grey Henson.

If you want to be ready to buy tickets in your area, the future tour locations and dates are here. You will likely want to pay attention to the very first day single tickets go on sale, because that’s when Seattle’s tickets sold out! The one city that currently appears to have tickets is Chicago, and that looks like it’s because the tour will be there much longer than any other location.

And it’s true, for many, many audiences members, that you’ll be laughing almost non-stop, enjoying the crisp choreography by Casey Nicholaw, the terrific, funny songs, and a great ensemble of performers.

Culture "The Book of Mormon" – Sold Out Smash in Seattle