Looks like you’re in luck, Urinetown: The Musical is coming to Loma this spring. As they closed off with auditions in December, the talented students chosen for the musical have been working so hard to prepare for their first week of rehearsal starting on February 3rd.
The show takes place in an industrial city in the mid 1900s. Within this city, there is a water shortage and citizens are forced to pay money to the Urine Good Company in order to use the restroom. Citizens who refuse to pay are essentially arrested and are banished to live in Urinetown. The owner of the Urine Good Company, Caldwell B. Cladwell, has a daughter, Hope, who falls in love with the leader of Urinetown, Bobby Strong. This causes disarray within the city and chaos throughout the play.
One of the lead actors, Freshman Ashley Carlstrom, is excited to begin rehearsal for her first production at Point Loma. When asked about what she was looking forward to, Carlstrom shared, “I’m just ready to be back in my element and begin forming relationships with my cast mates.” Before coming to PLNU, Carlstrom was a part of Christian Arts and Theater in Corona, California, for 7 years. She has starred in 18 shows where her favorite role was playing the lead of Millie Dilmount in the musical Thoroughly Modern Millie.
She also explained how preparation for this show has been a little different than the many others she has done in the past. “The entire cast has to be off-book by the first rehearsal.” Carlstrom said, “So I have to be fully memorized before I even start rehearsing the show.” After months of studying her lines, Carlstrom is ready to bring her character, Hope Cladwell, to life. She also gave some insight as to who her character is. “Hope Cladwell is a young ingénue who is blinded by her father’s wealth, yet she falls in love with a poor man and is made aware of the corruption and injustice going on around her town.”
Point Loma’s theater director, Megan DeBoard, explains why this show is different than the other productions put on in the past. “This musical is pretty different than other shows as it makes fun of itself, as well as other musicals.” DeBoard says, “Each song is a parody of other famous musicals, like West Side Story and Fiddler on the Roof.”
DeBoard was once a student at PLNU and had a lead role in the production of Urinetown in 2009. After graduating in 2010, she moved to London to follow her passion and receive her MFA in Theater Directing. Once her visa expired, Deboard came back to San Diego as she felt God calling her to come back. She shares, “He really showed up for me because in my first week, I was offered an adjunct position at PLNU and was doing a show at La Jolla Playhouse.” Deboard was then offered her current job at Loma, “A year later, they needed someone to step in to run the theatre and I jumped at the chance.”
DeBoard made it clear why this show is great to watch. “Honestly, it’s SO funny. It takes a lot to make me laugh and sometimes this is so funny, I have tears in my eyes.” she shared, “But also, it’s a pretty bold show that talks about sustainability and what we should be doing to preserve our resources (like having people pay to pee).” DeBoard also added that, “If you see only one show in your four years at PLNU, it should be this one.”
Urinetown is the must-see musical of Loma. It’s filled with catchy songs, hilarious jokes, and a plot that reveals a satiric version of a city’s legal system. As Megan DeBoard said herself, “Urine for a good time.”
On March 26th, find your way to Salomon Theater to support the Urinetown cast on their opening night. It’s a show you won’t want to miss!
By: Alejandra Hurtado