“The Book of Mormon” was a tremendous hit when it first hit Broadway back in 2011 and judging by the huge crowd at DPAC this past Wednesday night the show remains as popular as ever. The excellent touring production currently on stage in Durham through this Sunday is full of laughs, catchy tunes and heart.
This Tony and Grammy award-winning musical tells the story about a mismatched pair of Mormon missionaries sent halfway around the world to a small village in Uganda that is dealing with some very serious problems like diseases, poverty, and abuse from a tribal warlord. Things do not go as planned As the two naive and overly ambitious missionaries try to convert the villagers.
The self-centered and over-confident Elder Price (Kevin Clay) has a crisis in his faith and goes on a soul searching journey of redemption that comes full circle by the end of the show. Meanwhile the awkward by well meaning Elder Cunningham (played by the hilarious Conner Peirson) steps up the challenge and tries to convert the villagers by telling stories that merge the Mormon faith with modern pop culture from Star Wars that results in lots of laughs along the way.
Everything about “The Book of Mormon” is outrageous, which is to be expected from the creators of “South Park.” But the story is never cruel nor does it take itself too seriously. Abd you can’t help but be drawn in by the catchy tunes, excellent choreography and the simple but beautiful sets of this wonderful production.
Yes the show does revolve on poking fun at Mormonism, but you could argue it is really pointing out the flaws of all religions while highlighting the strength of their valuable lessons as well and that if we should be really nice to everyone and make our planet our own paradise.
THE BOOK OF MORMON has performances through Sunday, August 12th at The Durham Performing Arts Center. For more information, visit: https://www.dpacnc.com/events/detail/the-book-of-mormon-2