Something Rotten! Is Anything But

1 min read

Photos courtesy of Laila Krefetz and Kayli Smith.

M-A Drama is back with Something Rotten!, a spectacular musical that originally premiered on Broadway in 2015. The story follows Nick and Nigel Bottom, two Renaissance-era playwrights struggling for attention amidst the rise of William Shakespeare. Just as they’re beginning to lose hope, Nick finds a soothsayer who comes up with an idea sure to captivate audiences, something unheard of but soon to become commonplace: a musical!

Although Shakespeare plays a prominent role, this production is nothing like the dusty, archaic plays you’ve been forced to read in your English classes (no hate to Will, but King Lear wasn’t exactly a page-turner). 

Senior Carson Sanie, who plays Nick, said, “The show is not what people think it will be. It has funk, rock, pop, jazz—it’s not some old-fashioned musical. It’s modern, the songs are catchy, and it might surprise some people.”

Sophomore Kealy Bryman, who plays Nick’s wife, Bea Bottom, said, “It’s very much a satire.” Although the show is a musical, it often makes fun of classic tropes from both Shakespeare’s work as well as the classic American musical—one song is literally titled, “God, I Hate Shakespeare.” Bryman continued, “It’s just so funny. You can’t go to the show without laughing. It doesn’t hold back at all—there’s a lot of dark humor.”

Although Something Rotten! doesn’t take itself too seriously, it’s still very heartfelt and technically-impressive. Sanie said, “The set is incredible. I was shocked when I saw it for the first time. The lighting is amazing, there’s a fog machine that adds to certain scenes, and our costumes are great.”

Bryman said, “It’s just really well put together. The story is so intricate and interesting. The more you listen to the music and read the script, the more allusions to Shakespeare you find.”

On her character, Bryman said, “She’s ahead of her time—a feminist who wants equal rights for women in 1590s Europe. I might be a little biased, but my favorite song is the one that I sing, ‘Right Hand Man.’ It’s different from traditional musical theater songs with a somewhat jazzy feel. She’s very determined to help her husband, and she goes out and gets things done.”

Sanie encouraged audiences to check it out, saying, “The show is like going to the movie theater to see a movie, except this is probably cheaper—$10 for students—and it’s supporting an amazing program. We put a lot of work into this and you might be really impressed by some of the things you see.”

Something Rotten! opens tonight, Friday, March 15th. The production will run six times over the next two weekends. You can buy tickets here at $10 for students and seniors and $15 for adults.

Collin is a senior at M-A in his second year of journalism. In addition to helping run the website, he enjoys writing about current events, politics, and issues relevant to the M-A community. He's also a member of M-A's debate team. In his free time, Collin likes to play guitar and hang out with friends.

Latest from Blog