BWW Review: TREY PARKER’S: CANNIBAL! THE MUSICAL Feeds Madison at Overture Center

By March 16, 2017 News No Comments
Photo by Dahlia Katz

The audience took their seats accompanied by bluegrass renditions of “Love in an Elevator” and “Been A Long Time Since I Rock and Rolled”. The excitement in the theater was palpable. This was after all the United Stated Premier of Trey Parker‘s: Cannibal! The Musical. After being warned during the opening announcements that we would have our “faces eaten off” if we failed to silence our cell phones the show opened.

Trey Parker‘s: Cannibal! The Musical is set in the western territories of Utah and Colorado, in 1874. The story is based on the historical figure Alfred Packer (Portrayed by Benjamin Zoey) an American prospector and admitted cannibal. Ol’ Alfred was forced to eat his expedition party to stay alive in the cruel Colorado Rockies during the winter of 1874. With songs like, “When I Was on Top of You”, “Meat my Destiny” and “Hang the Bastard” the night promises to unfold some laughs. Anyone familiar with Parker’s work, “South Park”, “Orgazmo”, “Baseket Ball” (a personal favorite) and of course, “Book of Mormon”, know what they are in for, and will recognize and appreciate the comedy here.

This is not simply a musical about cannibalism, no my friends, this is a love story…a hysterically twisted love story with some pseudo homoerotic elements along with a hint of bestiality thrown in for good measure.

The tale is told through a series of flash backs from Alfred’s jail cell, as he recounts the ordeal to journalist Polly Pyre (MichElle Nash). From his first encounter with the party, in which he somehow went from telling them “I’ve seen a picture of Colorado” to everyone thinking he was from there and making him their guide, we are led through the events leading up to the tragedy that befell the party. There are Japanese Indians (Don’t ask, simply suspend your dis-belief and enjoy), the encounter with the cyclops (Again…it just works, trust me ok!), the feast, and the arrest.

From the model horse defecating on the stage (to both groans and guffaws), to the beautiful vocals of Polly Pyre (MichElle Nash has an amazing voice!), the show runs the gamut of human emotions. With nods to Mario Brothers, 1970’s badly dubbed Martial Arts Movies, and even to “Book of Mormon” (Man Up!), this show offers something for everybody…except kids. THERE IS NOTHING HERE FOR KIDS! (Though the title may have given that away)

From start to finish, the show provided the audience a quality night of entertainment. It was enjoyable to join hundreds of laughing, happy people who were able to escape into some good theater and momentarily leave their cares behind.

Go! See this! But you may want to eat first, I don’t think you’ll care for what’s on the menu.

Trey Parker‘s Cannibal! The Musical Makes U.S. Premiere at Overture
“Rambunctious, raunchy and ridiculous … hits all the high notes!” – Mooney on Theatre
“Refreshingly ludicrous” – The New York Times

Madison, Wis. – Overture is proud to present the U.S. premiere of Trey Parker‘sCannibal! The Musical in the historic Capitol Theater Tuesday, March 14 – Sunday, March 19, 2017. Based on Parker’s fan-favorite film of the same name, Cannibal! The Musical is a fun-filled, action packed, delightfully campy night of musical comedy for mature audiences.

“I’ve been a long-time Trey Parker fan, and when I saw the film version of Cannibal! The Musical I loved it,” said Bond, co-creator and director. “As fans of the original, we’ve made sure to stay true to its campy spirit, while adding more goofs and hilarious songs. It’s allowed us to bring something new to the stage that has the same vintage Trey Parker wit. Now with our stellar cast – a range of talented comedians and musical theatre pros – we’ve got the perfect group to bring this creation to life.”

Tickets, on sale now, start at $30 and are available in person at the Overture Center Ticket Office (201 State Street), online at or by phone at 608.258.4141.

For an additional $15, attendees can arrive prior to the show (6 p.m. on Thursday, March 16, 2017) for Overture’s Get Social program to expand upon their experience and receive a discounted performance ticket. A Get Social ticket includes appetizers, activities such as 8-bit Cannibal gaming, cannibal trivia, old time photo booth, and more. Overture’s Get Social is presented by Godfrey & Kahn, S.C. More information is available at

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