Written by Scott Rigtrup, Contributing Writer for InFluential Magazine
Lexus Broadway in Austin brought the proverbial house down again this Wednesday night with the opening of the musical “School of Rock”! Warning, if you have a knack for the mundane, this performance will knock it clean out of you. All the better, if the word, “rebellion” rolls easily off your tongue, then race for the ticket line, because the spirit of Rock and Roll will never be so hysterically thrown in your lap!
Rob Colletti and Phoenix Schuman in the School of Rock Tour. © Matthew Murphy
The high energy pace of the whole show rolls right over the top of you from the get go with the standard announcement about audience conduct. Just when silencing your cell phone is mentioned, the screeching vocals of Dewey and the Heavy Metal playing of his big hair band thrusting out of their Marshall amps physically sets you back in your seat. Sadly we quickly learn that Dewey, in all his zeal, has no idea that his fellow band members have decided to kick him out of the band and replace him with a stronger recruit in preparation for the upcoming and much anticipated annual Battle of The Bands contest.
The cast of the School of Rock Tour. © Matthew Murphy.
Things go from bad to worse when Dewey’s crash pad is jeopardized when his friend’s wife demands that Dewey start paying rent or get out after years of mooching off his generous friends. Desperation grows and in a flash of deviant genius, Dewey gets the hair brained idea to impersonate his friend as a substitute teacher at the prestigious Horace Green private school to make some quick cash for rent.
The cast of the School of Rock Tour. © Matthew Murphy
Quite unavoidably, Dewey bumbles and fumbles his way in to the teaching gig and squarely sets himself in the cross hairs of the school principal and fellow faculty members with his uncouth behavior and slovenly appearance which only heightens the fact that Dewey has absolutely no earthly idea of how he’s going to pull of acting like a teacher, let alone trying to act like a grown adult. Yet amongst all the classroom follies, Dewey makes the most unexpected discovery when one day his students start pulling out instruments for music class and he realizes that these kids can ROCK!!!!
Rob Colletti and Lexie Dorsett Sharp in the School of Rock Tour. © Matthew Murphy
Now at last, class is truly in session for Dewey and he’s headed for stardom with his new dream band that he enthusiastically names “School of Rock”! And folks, just in case you’re wondering, all of the cast memebers on stage are really playing their own instruments and these kids are insanely talented!
Tensions grow as we learn of the individual student’s home lives and the intense pressures placed upon them by their parents to achieve scholastically. All the while the Battle of The Bands contest is fast approaching and it almost seems like Dewey’s delusions of grandeur may actually come true!
Emotions erupt when the parents and the principal find out about Dewey’s plans to enter his young band in the contest and in a blink of the eye, Dewey’s Rock and Roll world unravels before him when they pull the proverbial plug on his plans. Beleaguered, Dewey makes his way back to his soon to be lost crash pad, beat down and hopeless of ever achieving Rock greatness.
Theo Mitchell-Penner in the School of Rock Tour. © Matthew Murphy
Thankfully, his student’s rebel determination pulls Dewey from his emotional abyss and on to the contest stage of the Battle of The Bands to learn yet another unexpected life lesson and redemption reigns when Dewey is offered a new full-time position at Horace Green teaching music and almost magically joy returns to Dewey’s Rock and Roll world!
“School of Rock” is the most energetic and enthusiastic stage performance that I have ever seen! When the elderly audience members are dancing their way out of the auditorium after the performance as much as, if not more than the teenagers, you know that you have been a part of Rock and Roll history!
Lexus Broadway in Austin presented by Texas Performing Arts
School of Rock – The Musical
February 13 – 18, 2018
Tuesday – Friday at 8 p.m.; Saturday at 2 p.m. & 8 p.m.; Sunday at 1 p.m. & 7 p.m.
Bass Concert Hall | 2350 Robert Dedman Drive | Austin, TX 78712
Start at $30.Tickets are available at BroadwayinAustin.com, texasperformingarts.org, the Bass Concert Hall ticket office, all Texas Box Office Outlets, by phone at (512) 477-6060. For groups of 10 or more, call (877) 275-3804 or email Austin.email@example.com