The raucous, irreverent journey of six out-of-work steel workers from the despair of unemployment to the daring triumph of a one night only, bare-it-all strip performance boldly takes the stage at Arts Express Theatre in The Full Monty. A rock/jazz infused musical based on the hilarious 1997 film of the same name, The Full Monty runs March 24 – April 8, with R-rated shows Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m., and PG-13 matinees Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m.
Set in Buffalo, New York, instead of the original film’s England, The Full Monty opens with best friends Jerry Lukowski (Sean Hazen) and Dave Bukatinsky (Tyler Gastellum/Braden Cooley), who, frustrated with their lack of job prospects, stumble upon a “Girl’s Only Night” in town and spy their wives, Pam (Diane Goldsmith) and Georgie (Tiff Jensen) having the time of their lives. Astonished at how much money the women of the town throw at strippers, desperate to make money, and feeling emasculated, Jerry concocts a plan to enlist Dave along with their fellow unemployed factory workers in a one-night strip act featuring “real” men.
Not knowing the first thing about stripping, dancing, or putting an act together, they approach their former supervisor, Harold (Sean Patrick/Tom Spencer) and ask him to be their dance instructor. Harold has kept his unemployment secret from his wife Vicki (Abigail Chesney), and as she gushes over a dream vacation Harold has promised her, Harold gives in and joins the all-male “dance” troupe as well.
After recruiting a pianist and holding auditions, the men total six members in all, but they are far from being ready, realizing they must not only learn a routine and be able to sell it, but they must also face deep fears of self-image, lack of confidence, and damaged pride. As the men practice in secret, they bond over insecurities and rally together, ready to give a performance that goes “all the way.”
With a book by Terrence McNally and music by David Yazbek, The Full Monty was nominated for ten Tony Awards, including Best Music, and was the winner of the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Lyrics and Music as well as The Theatre World Award in 2001.
For anyone looking for daring, crowd-pleasing, musical, racy fun, The Full Monty is sure to satisfy.
The Full Monty is Directed by Jonathon Scott Crider and Choreographed by Simone Jolivet-Manuel.
For tickets, visit https://arts-express.org/the-full-monty/ or call the Arts Express Theatre Box Office at (520) 319-0400.
ABOUT ARTS EXPRESS THEATRE
Arts Express Theatre is southern Arizona’s leading musical theatre company, staging large-scale professional quality musical theater productions throughout the year. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, AET is committed to opening the arts to all ages. It serves over 25,000 people annually through a continuum of introductory and advanced programs, and engaging audience experiences.