Profane, award-winning 'Book of Mormon' musical coming to Salt Lake City
Those reponses were right in line with comments made by Wall Street Journal theater critic Terry Teachout and the musical's creators, Matt Stone and Trey Parker.
Teachout called the musical flabby because the target was easy.
"The creators of 'South Park' like to call themselves 'equal-opportunity offenders,'" Teachout wrote, "but if you think there's anything risky about 'The Book of Mormon,' you're kidding yourself. Making fun of Mormons in front of a Broadway crowd is like shooting trout in a demitasse cup. And while we're on the subject of imitation courage, let it be duly noted that if the title of this show were 'The Quran,' it wouldn't have opened. Messrs. Parker and Stone found that out the hard way a year ago when online death threats caused Comedy Central executives to censor an episode of 'South Park' in which the Prophet Muhammad was shown wearing a bear costume. The boys have learned their lesson well: Never shoot at anybody who shoots back."
Indeed, Stone and Parker told the Chicago Tribune they don't touch Islam anymore.
When the musical opened in London, the church published a short Q&A on its British Newsroom website that included a summary of the play.
"The musical’s central characters are two missionaries sent on a mission to Uganda," the summary said. "There they work in a village where a warlord is threatening the village’s inhabitants. The missionaries try to share the Book of Mormon, but the local inhabitants are more concerned about AIDS, war and staying alive. The musical trivializes and caricatures some of the church’s beliefs, including the Book of Mormon and founding prophet Joseph Smith. The musical’s creators portray the missionaries as naive but innocently optimistic. The musical is full of profanity and extremely vulgar content, including the frequent, blasphemous use of profanity directed at God and Jesus Christ."
Officials at Magic Arts & Entertainment, which scheduled the musical to come to Salt Lake, were unavailable for interviews Friday.
“This is one of the most exciting lineups in the 30 years we have been bringing national tours of Broadway musicals to Salt Lake,” Broadway Across America-Utah President John Ballard said in a press release. “Season ticketsholders will enjoy an extraordinary season of Broadway and will also be first in line to secure seats at the spectacular new Performing Arts Center which is now under construction.”
According to Broadway Across America, which is bringing the show to Capitol Theatre as part of its 2014-2015 lineup, season ticket holders will have the option of purchasing a four-show or five-show package. The four-show package does not include "The Book of Mormon." The other productions in the lineup are "Nice Work If You Can Get It," "How the Grinch Stole Christmas — The Musical," "Once" and "The Illusionists."
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