On February 14, 1998, and far off-broadway, “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” an energetic rock musical with incredible heart, would debut at NY's Jane Street Theatre launching a new theatrical production that would go on to span the world.
What helps this musical remain so endearing more than 21 years since its debut is that at the heart of this androgynous, 1970s indie/punk rock musical is a love story for the ages looking at themes of creative partnerships and about the tough choices (and personal sacrifices) we all are willing to make with our relationships.
“Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” tells the story of an "internationally ignored song stylist" named Hedwig Schmidt, an East German genderqueer rock singer, who in order to migrate to America (with her military sugar daddy) will need to leave something of himself behind.
What is left behind becomes the basis of Hedwig’s heart-pounding, punk rock show tune, “Angry Inch,” that reveals the remains of Hedwig’s botched sex-change operation, which has left her with just "an angry inch." It is also addressing the lengths that we are willing to go to get to our own Junction City, Kansas.
If you are fans of breaking the theatrical fourth wall, then “Hedwig” is just the production for you as it is a thrilling storytelling ride set against a rock and roll score that echoes the style of sounds popularized by music acts Lou Reed, David Bowie, Patti Smith, and Yoko Ono.
The musical follows “Hedwig” as they travel throughout the U.S. with her glam rock band, telling her story about how her ex-boyfriend and former charge stole her songs.
“Hedwig” might seem like heavy stuff for a night out but it is also extremely funny and at times a real tear-jerker.
Actors’ Theatre Grand Rapids is producing this two-weekend run, but tickets will cost certainly sell out for this show.
So unless you want to wait another six years for the next revival (SouthSide Theater Company produced the last local “Hedwig” production at Dog Story Theatre in 2013,) then get your tickets today.
Tickets for Actors' Theatre's production of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” may be purchased here