Exceeding Intentionally Offensive Expectations: “Gorefest: the 13th”

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Presented by ImprovBoston
Book/Lyrics/Score by Don Schuerman, Steve Gilbane, Matt Chapuran and Jeff Kimball
Directed by Nate Lopez

Oct. 22 – 31, 2015
Studio Theater at 40 Prospect St
Central Square, Cambridge, MA
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Review by Kitty Drexel

Disclaimer: Mrs. Drexel auditioned for Gorefest: the 13th and wasn’t cast. She firmly believes that only a superficial ass would allow something like that to taint (heh) her review.

(Cambridge, MA) The cast, crew and band of Gorefest: the 13th were frickin’ awesome. It was a good time getting splattered with blood and urine by IB last Saturday. It always is. That being said, when was Gorfest moved from the Main Stage to the Studio Theater? Who’s crazypants idea was it to move the Boston-area cult classic musical into a smaller space? Cramming that many warm bodies into that room, even with the wooden benches, is not cool. It’s not good for the cast. It’s not good for the audience. Get yourself sorted, IB.

Gorefest: the 13th is that horror movie crossed with that other horror movie and produced live on stage. To sum up: Sisters and rivals Neve (Molly Bourque) and Kourtney (Jocelin Weiss) are attending Camp Theatre Camp for the summer. Between auditions, rehearsals and summer love sexy times, campers keep dying grotesquely. With co-campers, Winslow (Nolan Murphy) and love-disinterest Brett (Will Martin), Neve hopes to capture the murdering monster Candle Face and save the campers from doom. They are not aided by only-adults-in-the-room Ros, the camper director, (Kara Gelormini) and handyman Pops (Matt Fear).

Shockingly, Gorefest passes the Bechdel test. Good for you! Some of the actors do not pass the hearing test. Even in such a small theater, some of the actors were difficult to hear when they were singing. Your band was awesome. It doesn’t need to turn down the sound. The cast needs to apply their screaming skills to the sung word.

This musical will not be winning any Tonys. It’s writing is flimsy and derivative. The music is clearly borrowed from other musicals. The 4th wall comes and goes at a whim. Anyone attending for Pulitzer-level writing is attending for the wrong reasons. Really, attending for any other reason that laughing at horror movie tropes, sexism, alcoholism, homophobia, and community theatre-levels of gorey explosions with a group of people you’ll likely only see again in Hell is the wrong reason to attend. It’s a wonderful mess, gloriously offensive, and a damn good time. You will laugh until your ass falls off but not if you can’t take a bad joke. Your tasteful, dainty tea-sipping, candy-ass Halloween fun will be found elsewhere.

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