888 4 GAY NEWS or 888-442-9639

THEATER REVIEW: “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” endears with laughter

My parents lived in a trailer for a time. Dad called it “the tin can,” but I must admit that for all the ribbing he took (largely from me), the digs were pretty spiffy. He could walk out the door and have Mission Bay at his feet, and the pad itself boasted way more interior space than I’ve ever had.

The stereotypical double-wide life that takes the beating from comedians is immortalized in “The Great American Trailer Park Musical,” but you’ll have to hurry to see the hilarious production playing through May 15 at Coronado Playhouse.

A trash-talking trio of wives called “The Girls” play tour guide to the amorous goings-on in Armadillo Acres, a North Florida trailer park where Norbert Garstecki (Don Evans) is trying to coach his agoraphobic wife Jeannie (Mary Augustine) out of the trailer so he can take her out to celebrate their 20th anniversary.

When the young and gorgeous Pippi (Stephanie Jenkins) moves in next door, you can guess that sparks – as well as some fur and stinging comments – will fly.

The simple plot, written with great humor by Betsy Kelso and featuring David Nehls’ most amusing music and lyrics, is cleverly staged by director Nick Reeves and ably backed up by music director Erich Einfalt’s fine five-man band.

The voices are generally good and anchored by two standouts: Jenkins, a new (and most welcome) newcomer to the area, and Lisa Allison, as Betty (one of “The Girls,” and complemented by Dawn Marie Zuniga-Williams’ delightfully over-the-top portrayal of Lin. Williams also created the amusing choreography.

Kudos to set designer Amy Reams and to the often hilarious costume designs of Eileen Salsman and Jane Russell.

Laughter is in fairly short supply these days. “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” will increase your total considerably.

The details

“The Great American Trailer Park Musical” plays through May 15 at Coronado Playhouse, 18354 Strand Way.

Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m.; Sunday matinee at 2 p.m.

For tickets, call (619) 435-4856 or visit HERE.

To read more reviews by SDGLN Theater Critic Jean Lowerison, click HERE.