The new musical, which began previews Aug. 20, was originally slated to bow Sept. 15 but bumped its opening at Dodger Stages one week to Sept. 22 when Sergio Trujillo joined the team as choreographer. Another delay "to accommodate the insertion of two new musical numbers" pushed the opening back five days.
The new Off-Broadway cast of The Great American Trailer Park Musical features Tony Award winner Shuler Hensley (Oklahoma, "Van Helsing"), Linda Hart (Hairspray, Anything Goes), Kaitlin Hopkins (Bat Boy, Noises Off, Bare), Orfeh (Footloose, Saturday Night Fever), Leslie Kritzer (Hairspray, Bat Boy), Wayne Wilcox (A Man of No Importance, The Light in the Piazza) and original NYMF cast member Marya Grandy.
The Great American Trailer Park Musical centers around the regular guy Norbert (Hensley) and his agoraphobic wife Jeannie (Hopkins) whose marriage is threatened by an Armadillo Acres' newcomer, the hot young stripper Pippi (Orfeh). The trailer park also plays home to a Greek chorus-like trio of women Linoleum, Betty and Pickles (Grandy, Hart and Kritzer, respectively) — each dysfunctional in their own right.
Featuring music and lyrics by David Nehls with a book by Betsy Kelso (who also directs the show), the country-rock and blues musical is billed as "a new show about agoraphobia, adultery, '80s nostalgia, spray cheese, road kill, hysterical pregnancy, a broken electric chair, kleptomania, strippers, flan & disco." Inspired by a neighborhood from his childhood paper route, Nehls finally lets loose the earthy folk he describes have "always been a nugget in the back of my head." The composer recalled to Playbill.com "In the wintertime, I was out for like an hour and a half delivering papers and they were always the people who had hot cocoa and cookies for me and would always engage me in conversation. They were the coolest people on the paper route; and they were so lovely." (For more from the cast, read Playbill.com's feature.)
The design team includes Derek McLane (sets), Donald Holder (lighting), Markas Henry (costumes), Peter Fitzgerald (sound) and Josh Marquette (hair and wig). Richard C. Rouscher serves as production stage manager with Francesca Russell (asst. stage manager) and Rob Conover is technical supervisor.
The songlist includes "This Side of the Tracks," "One Step Closer," "The Buck Stops Here," "It Doesn’t Take a Genius," "Owner of My Heart," "Great American TV Show," "Flushed Down the Pipes," "Storm’s A-Brewin’," "Road Kill," "But He’s Mine/It’s Never Easy," "That’s Why I Love My Man," "Panic," and "Finale (Make Like a Nail)."
Tickets to The Great American Trailer Park Musical at Dodger Stages, 340 West 50th St (between 8th and 9th Ave.) are available by calling (212) 239-6200 or through the link below. For more information, visit the website at www.trailerparkmusical.com.