The company of Urinetown, the Musical. Photo: CLT

Urinetown, the Musical

Music by Mark Mollman
Lyrics by Mark Mollman & Greg Kotis
Book by Greg Kotis
Directed by Rebecca Brewer

A review by Brian Kennedy

Entire contents are copyright © 2024 by Brian Kennedy. All rights reserved.

With genuine enthusiasm, many earned laughs, and incredible chorus moments, Clarksville Little Theatre has one of its best-ever productions with Urinetown the Musical.

Rebecca Brewer directed and choreographed the satirical comedy musical with Wesley Thomas as Music Director. The musical looks at a world where, thanks to a 20-year drought, water is scarce and the only toilets available cost money to be used. A mega-corporation named the UGC (Urine Good Company) controls the pay toilets. The peasants can only use Public Amenity #9, the dirtiest one in town. If they relieve themselves somewhere else, the offenders are sent to “Urinetown”, a place from which no one returns. 

Most residents are in peasant outfits, brownish, dirty old clothes while the money-grubber UGC CEO Caldwell B. Cladwell (wonderfully played by Gary Crockett) and his cronies are always dressed in expensive three-piece suits. 

There’s so much to love about this show, starting with Jason Potts as the narrator Officer Lockstock. He effortlessly connects with the audience, creating many humorous moments explaining what has happened and what is to come. His interactions with Little Sally (the exquisite Magdalen Hartman) reveal more details and lead to plenty of belly laughs.

Then, there’s the amazing harmonies. When the cast comes together in the opening title song, the crescendo into and including the big notes are hit with gusto and fill the room clearly and cleanly, rivaling many Broadway touring productions. 

Later, after the UGC raises the pay toilet rate, there is a Les Miserables-style revolt, and the harmonies during the early Act II numbers “What is Urinetown” and “Snuff That Girl” become more passionate. The payoff arrives in the glorious “Run, Freedom, Run”, which puts the peasants into a revival setting, selling every bit of it to inspirational and hilarious effect.

Leading the revolt is Brayden Glass as Bobby Strong. He is easily believable as a leader and does a great job at playing up his character’s emotions for comedic effect. The chemistry between him and Hannah Vaughn, as Hope Caldwell, is immediate. 

Vaughn, in turn, is tremendous as Caldwell’s daughter, showcasing the right emotion while finding out what’s going on, telling Strong to follow his heart, and making her own choices.

The highlights mentioned here are only the beginning of what is remarkable about Urinetown the Musical. There are plenty of well-earned laughs, wonderful harmonies, and a cast that clearly had great fun putting this musical together. Do yourself a favor and go. To the show, that is.

Featuring Seth Brewer, Larry Chaney, Carrie Chastain, Gary Crockett, Lee Gibson, Brayden Glass, Magdalen Hartman, Erin McMahon, Gabriel Petri, Jason Potts, Emily Skirvin, & Hannah Vaughn

Urinetown, the Musical

May 10, 11, 17 & 18 @ 7:30 PM
May 12 & 19 @ 2:00 PM

Clarksville Little Theater
301 E Montgomery Ave
Clarksville, IN 47129

Brian Kennedy is a nearly life-long Louisville resident who has performed in plays since 2004. He also wrote extensively about the Louisville theatre scene for and from 2009-2015. Currently, he maintains the theatre blog LouBriantheater. When not involved in the theatre scene, he is an avid runner, participating in 5Ks throughout the state and in southern Indiana.