As enthusiastically and ingenuously embodied by paradoxically excellent singers Austin Ku and Brendan McNab under Stephen Nachamie’s direction, the two collaborators appear before a table loaded up with Jim-Bob-style baseball hats, each bearing the amateurishly scrawled name of a character (from Gutenberg to Beef Fat Trimmer), that they will switch, stack, and otherwise manipulate with abandon. Then, accompanied by musical director Todd C. Gordon as a rehearsal pianist named Charles, the pair put on a two-hour show that Brown and King likely conceived in a drug-fueled half-hour, regularly interrupting its melodious melodramatics to talk about themselves or wax knowledgeable about the art form.
Meanwhile, in Schlimmer, the town folk suffer the tragedy of not being able to read. Gutenberg, the unrequited-love object of a grape-stomping wench named Helvetica, has a Eureka moment in which he thinks up a new use for his wine press. But an evil and sadistic redneck monk sets out to thwart our hero, so as not to lose his powerful position as middleman between the masses and the Good Book. Helvetica winds up locked in a tower, and Mr. G gets burned at the stake as part of a climactic folk festival. None of this ever happened or even makes sense. But Bud and Doug throw their big hearts, tiny brains, committed larynxes, and other body parts into it with as much reverence as if it were not Gutenberg! The Musical but the Gutenberg Bible.
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