NMU presents ‘Monty Python’s Spamalot’
MARQUETTE — Northern Michigan University Theatre & Dance will present the musical Monty Python’s Spamalot Oct. 12-14 and 19-20.
Director and NMU assistant professor Jimmy Ludwig appeared in the original Broadway production of the show, sharing the stage with familiar veterans Tim Curry, Hank Azaria and David Hyde-Pierce.
“I spent a lot of time with Spamalot,” Ludwig said in a press release. “I stayed in the Broadway company for nearly four years, and then I went to Vegas to do it. I was there for about half a year before briefly doing it at a theater in North Carolina. Altogether, this show consumed about five years of my life.”
“Spamalot’s” tagline is that it’s “lovingly ripped off” from the 1975 motion picture “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” a comedy film satirizing Arthurian legends. As it suggests, the musical follows the plot of the film closely, with King Arthur recruiting his knights of the Round Table and being given a quest from God to find the Holy Grail. Hijinks ensue as they encounter antagonists including The Black Knight, killer rabbits and The Knights who Say Ni.
“Most of it is really the film on stage with a lot more music,” Ludwig said. “The show is drop-dead, fall over funny. So really, as a director, I’m not approaching it in a fresh way in any way, shape or form. I am doing what I am very comfortable with in the show, and honestly, I know what works really well.”
The show features mostly NMU theater majors, with John Fuller taking the lead as King Arthur. Ludwig spoke high praises of his cast a few weeks in advance of opening night, saying they’re “cooking with gas and in really good shape.”
“I’ve been in the acting business for 30 years,” Ludwig said. “Work ethic is ‘the thing’ and something we really preach here. This cast has that. They’re working really hard and they have that grit that you need. We have people working on their own outside of rehearsal, and even people who have never tap-danced before are learning how to for the show. It’s really fun to watch and they’re making good progress.”
Show times are at 7:30 each evening, with a 1 p.m. sensory-friendly Theatre for All performance on Saturday, Oct. 14.
Tickets are $20 for the general public, $15 for NMU faculty/staff, seniors, military; $13 for students; and $5 for NMU students.
To learn more about “Monty Python’s Spamalot” and to purchase tickets, https://nmu.edu/theatreanddance/monty-pythons-spamalot