Make us your home page

Quirky 'Urine-town,' romantic comedy big winners at Richey Suncoast Theatre

Two favorites were Mike McGugan as Officer Lockstock and Liz Onley as Little Sally in Urinetown.


Two favorites were Mike McGugan as Officer Lockstock and Liz Onley as Little Sally in Urinetown.


In what was, arguably, the strongest and most up-to-date season of musicals at Richey Suncoast Theatre, the quirky comedy Urinetown was the big winner at the 2015-16 Charlie Awards on Saturday, the theater's version of the Tony Awards, named in honor of the late managing director Charlie Skelton.

Winners are chosen by popular vote of audiences, and the darkly funny comedy won eight of 11 awards given in the "musical" category (there was one tie).

On the comedy side, audiences sided with the rather outdated 1962 comedy If a Man Answers, giving it six out of seven awards over the rather risqué Key for Two.

If a Man Answers has a wise French mother teaching her American daughter how to lie to and manipulate her husband by using a pseudo-lover who calls and hangs up, with the idea that the jealous husband will become more attentive. Key for Two has a clever woman juggling two married men as her lovers in order to support her upscale lifestyle.

On the musical side, all three of the season's shows hit Broadway in the 21st century, a departure from the usual inclusion of at least one classic, sometimes more, from early to mid-20th century. Urinetown opened on Broadway in 2001, while the other two musicals hit even later — The Drowsy Chaperone in 2006 and Young Frankenstein in 2007. All three musicals were well received by RST audiences.

Urinetown is a tale from the future, when water is so scarce that people aren't allowed to flush their toilets. When the stench of bodily wastes in the bushes becomes overpowering, an enterprising businessman establishes public toilets, then persuades corrupt politicians to require everyone to pay to use them. It sounds horrible, but it is hilariously funny (especially as done by Richey Suncoast) and even comes with a uproariously cynical take on human nature in the end.

The Drowsy Chaperone is subtitled A Musical Within a Comedy and has a narrator explaining the intricacies of musical theater, at some points joining the cast to demonstrate what he means. Young Frankenstein is the musical version of Mel Brooks' 1974 parody of both old-fashioned horror flicks and Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein, about a monster created by a mad scientist from the body parts he steals from cemeteries.

Musical favorites

Female Lead: Suzanne Meck as Janet Van de Graaff in The Drowsy Chaperone

Favorite Male: Ryan Bintz as Bobby Strong in Urinetown

Favorite Supporting Female: Vicky Stinnett as Penelope Pennywise in Urine-town

Favorite Supporting Male: Mike McGuigan as Officer Lockstock in Urine-town

Favorite Featured Male: (tie) Ricky Cheeks as Hot Blades Harry in Urine-town; Mike McGuigan as Aldolpho in The Drowsy Chaperone

Favorite Featured Female: Malia Bolster as Little Sally in Urinetown

Favorite New Kid: Rachel Brown as Little Becky Two Shoes in Urinetown

Favorite Director: Linda Hoagland, The Drowsy Chaperone

Favorite Music Director: Mark Anthony Jelks, Urinetown

Favorite Choreography: David Bethards, Urinetown

Comedy favorites

Female Lead: Paige Cetnor as Chantel Stacey in If a Man Answers

Favorite Male: Jason Hoolihan as Eugene Wright in If a Man Answers

Favorite Supporting Female: Diane Ramos as Germaine Stacey in If a Man Answers

Favorite Supporting Male: Doug Ronk as John Stacey in If a Man Answers

Favorite Featured Male: Bill Schommer as Richard in Key for Two

Favorite Female: Emily Nettnin Earle as Belladonna in If a Man Answers

Favorite Director: Rich Aront and Vicki McGinnis for If a Man Answers

Quirky 'Urine-town,' romantic comedy big winners at Richey Suncoast Theatre 08/28/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 31, 2016 4:55pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Spaceballs 2 could really happen, Mel Brooks says


    When Mel Brooks talks about a sequel to Spaceballs, ‘80s fans are tempted to politely smile and nod our heads. It’s a joke, we figure, because how can you possibly recapture the magic of the 1987 Star Wars spoof, especially since John Candy has passed away. 

  2. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for May 23


    Frankie Valli And The Four Seasons: The original Jersey boy himself has produced hits like Sherry, Walk Like A Man, Rag Doll, December '63 and Grease during his long-lasting career both solo and with the Four Seasons. 7:30 p.m., Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, …

    Saint PAUL, MN - JULY 25: Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons perform at the 2010 Starkey Hearing Foundation 10th Annual "So the World May Hear" Gala at Saint Paul RiverCentre on July 25, 2010 in Saint Paul, Minnesota.   (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images for Starkey Hearing Foundation) *** Local Caption *** Frankie Valli
  3. Painted with suspense


    TAMPA — Sometimes a show comes along that does everything. It engages the senses on every level, tells a story that feels real and keeps you guessing to the end.

    Ned Averill-Snell, left, plays Latham and Landon Green is Stumpy, two working class painters working to convert a loft for a well-off couple.
  4. Restaurant review: Tampa wine bar Cru Cellars also a worthy spot to indulge in sophisticated plates

    Food & Dining

    TAMPA -- One of the joys of writing about businesses in a particular market over a long period of time is watching some of them find their footing, mature and blossom. Cru Cellars has seriously come into its own.

    Citrus Panzanella, with blood orange, grapefruit, orange, fennel and crouton, at Cru Cellars in Tampa.
  5. Review: ABC's 'Dirty Dancing' remake should be left in a corner


    It seems as if nothing is sacred anymore.

    Abigail Breslin and Colt Prattes perform the iconic lift in the Dirty Dancing remake on ABC.