Oconee County High School will premiere a play called “Urinetown” Jan. 12 at the Oconee County Civic Center at 7 p.m. The play will run for three nights, and start at the same time the following nights. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students.
“Urinetown” is a musical with a flair for satirical comedy.
The play’s story takes place in the aptly named Urinetown, whose government has outlawed the use of private toilets in favor of public, pay-per-use facilities owned by the also-aptly-named Urine Good Company.
Drew Doss, the drama teacher at OCHS, said that it has been one of his favorite plays for years, not only for its catchy title, but also for its subject matter pitting the utility company CEO against the poor townspeople.
“Both groups feel like they’re doing what’s right for the community and what’s right for humanity in general, so having the students play with those aspects has been a lot of fun,” Doss said.
Doss also appreciates the play because of the various opportunities it allows students to showcase their abilities while also testing and growing those abilities.
“You’ve got the satirical aspect. You’ve got the musical aspect and the comedic aspect,” he said. “You’ve got all of these things that they’re having to think about as they perform.”
It has not only been those aspects that students in the play have had to consider. Doss explained that much of the play’s satire either parodies or pays homage to other classic musicals.
“You’ve got parodies of ‘Westside Story’ and ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ and typical romantic comedy musicals,” he said, “so in order for the students to portray [all of] that, they have to understand all those other musicals as well.”
He also added that the students are also having to grapple with the play’s music.
“When you listen to the music itself, it doesn’t sound particularly challenging to the students,” he said, “but as we’ve gotten into it, [they are] trying to balance the harmonies along with everything else that’s going on with the choreography and the acting.”