To some, musical theater is best left to performers who like tights and tap shoes and audiences who hit the seniors' buffet on their way to yet another production of The Sound of Music. Rent did its best to destigmatize musicals, though the experience was like watching Friends on Ice. Ignomoney, Thursdays through Sundays through May 21 at Denver Civic Theatre, may be just what the angst-ridden theater doctor ordered. A punk-rock musical written and directed by first-time local playwright James McElwee, Ignomoney chronicles six characters and their labors in a band -- appropriately, McElwee cast members of local acts including Mark Armeijo of Gina Go Faster, Josh Pinto of Burn Circuit as well as local spoken-word artist Paul Lipman. The play's companion CD -- which references everything from the Muppet Show and Jesus Christ Superstar to Leadbelly and is credited to the Rotten Crotch Kids -- features playing from Mike Mayhem of Buzz Bomber and the M-80s and Merle Carey, a former member of Slim Cessna's Auto Club. Ignomoney is one of five regional plays being workshopped this season by the HorseChart Theater Company, which means performances are sans costumes or sets. Which should only make the punk vibe seem that much more authentic.
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