Hedwig inches into Knoxville

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The Black Box Theatre’s current offering, “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” presents a rich, thought-provoking performance that is sure to entertain.

The film’s director, Amy Hubbard, first saw “Hedwig” as a film short at the Sundance Film Festival. She knew instantly that, one day, she would obtain the rights to do a stage production. She just had to wait for the right time. That time is now.

It has been said that when you find the truth in the tragedy, you discover the heart of comedy. Let it be said, here and now, that there is plenty of both in “Hedwig and the Angry Inch.”

Hedwig is the story of a boy named Hansel who has been born on the wrong side of the Berlin Wall. Hansel’s dream is to find this other half. During his search, he reluctantly submits to a sex change operation in order to marry an American GI and get over the Berlin Wall. The operation is botched, changing Hansel into Hedwig and leaving her with the aforementioned angry inch.

The story addresses the human condition; as it tells of Hedwig’s meteoric rise eventually achieving the status of an “Internationally Ignored” rock star, backed up by her Pan-Slavic band. Through a collage of songs, flashbacks, and animation, the bitter, yet witty, Hedwig tells her life story while performing in near-empty restaurants. Somewhere between the anguish and the acid wash, the cramped motel rooms and the crab cakes, Hedwig and the audience discover the truth, the tragedy, and the comedy, which lay within the origins of love. Hedwig in and of itself is, in reality, a highly controversial bit of business.

The Black Box’s production of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” stars Joe Beuerlein as Hedwig, Jodie Mantros as Yitzak, Lucas Flatt on guitar, and Nathan Barrett on drums. The Black Box Theatre presents “Hedwig” as part of the Actors Co-op Program, which also includes the Education at the Whippersnapper Playhouse and the Reading Awareness Initiative programs. We urge you to support them by attending a performance. Wear your pride gear to let them know that Knoxville’s GLBT community supports their efforts.

For more ticket and schedule information on “Hedwig and the Angry Inch.” call the Black Box Theatre (865) 909-9300. They are located at 5213 Homburg Place in Knoxville.