Road Construction in Traverse City: Watch for detours when visiting the Playhouse in May, 2024!

Embrace hilarity with a couple of OTP plays

Well, it's closing weekend for The Play that Goes Wrong.

Have you seen it yet?

You should. Two nights to go and absolutely worth it. This laughriot of a show is bringing down the house. Both figuratively and literally.

In no uncertain terms things go wrong. In fact, everything goes wrong. Props are mislaid. People are mislaid. Nothing that should be attached remains so. Walls fall down. Even the floor falls apart.

You name it and it probably happens or doesn't, as the case may be.

And it's hilarious. Not just funny, guffaw funny. I haven't laughed that hard in the theater for a very long time. And boy did the audience seem to need it. I know I did.

This is not to say that nothing happened previously this year, what with Laramie ProjectClueSpongebob, the Musical and Murder on the Orient Express, but this is a standout. And not to be an outlier, it is being followed by what promises to be a big finale for the entire season with the hit musical Something Rotten.

The musical was a surprise hit on Broadway a few years ago, winning a Tony Award for Christian Borle playing Shakespeare.

If you're a fan of Shakespeare, or not, and you love musicals, Something Rotten is a must-see. Here, amidst the black plague, Puritans and the latest fashion trend — codpieces, Shakespeare is the rock star of the day. brothers Nick and Nigel Bottom are trying to keep their acting company afloat. In a desperate attempt to out-Bard the Bard, Nick consults with a soothsayer, Nostradamus, who advises the future of theater involves acting, singing, and dancing — sometimes all at once! As the Bottom brothers strive to write the world's very first "musical", they find themselves caught in a bitter battle with the Bard.

Along the merry way to a happy ending, there are a lot of references to Shakespearean plays and Broadway classics through lines, visual style and music, where the humor can be ribald and bawdy.

Something Rotten is a hysterical, joyous celebration of everything you love about Broadway.

Even the Young Company ends their season with the fun educational and entertaining Schoolhouse Rock, Live! Jr. based on the Emmy award-winning 1970s Saturday-morning cartoon series that taught history, grammar, math and more through clever, tuneful songs. It's lighting up our main stage this June.

Before we close the book on this season we'll be holding our Gala for 2023 on June 22, with an encore event on the 23rd. Called "An Enchanted Evening," at the City Opera House, we hope you find your way to join us for what should be a memorable event.

As if that's not enough, just when you think we'll be slowing down, we are gearing up for another summer of Young Company activity and the stellar season for 2023-2024 to follow. I think I'll wait till my next article to expand on the new season. Meanwhile get your tickets for The Play That Goes Wrong and Something Rotten while you still can! Call 231-947-2210 or online at

Phil Murphy is the artistic director of the Old Town Playhouse.


Old Town Playhouse

Copyright (c)2023 The Record-Eagle, Edition 4/21/2023