By: Amanda Narcisi
I knew nothing about Book of Mormon when I took my seat on Wednesday night. I knew that two out of the three people behind it are the creators of South Park and I knew it stirred a lot of controversy when it came out. Two of the gentleman behind Book of Mormon, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, have stirred controversy for years with South Park. The Book of Mormon originally opened on Broadway in 2011. I didn’t know how much fun I was about to have. Among the shocked faces outlined in the audience was gut busting laughter and tears of joy.
The story behind Book of Mormon is two Mormon missionaries are sent to Africa to baptize and convert as many people to the church as possible. Hilarity ensues when one of the missionaries, Arnold; played by Conner Pierson, never read the book and makes up the story when his missionary partner abandons him. Gabe Gibbons plays Elder Price; he abandons Arnold for his love of Orlando and wanting to perform his mission there. The tribe that the missionaries are trying to convert are under civil war with from a terrorist and also have an outbreak of AIDS. While none of these things are funny the clash of culture does play out to be ridiculous.
The music of The Book of Mormon will have you dancing and have so many secret lyrics that you have to listen to it a few times to get all the laughs. The dancing and costumes are so well done and the scene changes were impeccable. I can see why this show sells out every year it comes to the Benedum Theater.
This run of Book of Mormon is through February 26th with various showtimes at the Benedum in the heart of The Cultural District. Get tickets at trustarts.org.