Spank! The Fifty Shades Parody at the Community Arts Center
For both lovers and haters of the extremely popular and controversial book series, “Fifty Shades of Grey,” comes “SPANK!,” the “unauthorized musical parody” that claims to explore all of the naughty fun of the book.
Its title, “SPANK!,” comes from the central theme of the “Fifty Shades” book series: S&M, which involves the sexual practices of bondage, discipline, etc.
Naturally, the show is for mature audiences. On the show’s website, spankshow .com, on the left, is a man, presumably the SPANK!’s version of the infamous Christian Grey, who has a woman tied up with a neck tie, and on the right, a set of handcuffs.
For those unfamiliar with “Fifty Shades,” it is about the relationship between a college graduate named Anastasia Steele, and a young businessman, Christian Grey. Controversy stems from its explicitly sexual scenes and what some call manipulation of Anastasia. Critics mainly have given the books mixed to negative reviews – but “SPANK!,” reviews on the other hand, are much more positive.
Rest assured, though, there is little cursing, no nudity and, surprisingly, no actual spanking.
“It’s SNL-meets-S&M,” said Suzanne Sole, who plays the reincarnation of E.L. James, the author of “Fifty Shades,” in the musical. She does a lot of narration in the performance as well as plays multiple roles; there are only three actors in the performance all together. Sole, as the actor who plays the author in the musical, is “concocting a twisted love story” as the other two actors play out a parody of the “Fifty Shades” story.
A comedian from Chicago, Sole has appeared in many different programs, including NBC’s “Joey,” TBS pilot “What News?,” and has appeared on many other networks including Lifetime, Comedy Central and E! Network. She also has performed improv, sketch and stand-up at many venues across the country.
If you haven’t read the books at all, don’t worry, this show will, according to Sole, still make you laugh. She also added that the performance doesn’t make fun of those who have read the book and that those who have read the series still love the show.
“It’s the sexualizing of everyday stuff,” Sole said.
Having read the series of books herself, she said they make for “excellent fodder for a parody.”
Many notable news outlets who have reviewed the musical agree, calling it “A hilarious satire of practically every trope in popular culture,” (Chicago Public Radio), “Utterly hilarious,” (FAB Magazine), “A sexy, hysterical, rip-roaring good time,” (Toronto Stage), and much more.
“This new imagining of the characters comes to life with sharp-witted comedy, musical numbers, sexy striptease performances from the leading hunk, plus lots of surprises,” spankshow.com says.
To buy tickets for this “twisted love story,” visit caclive.com. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. on May 29 at the Community Arts Center, 220 W. Fourth St.
“I want everyone to have a ‘spankin’ good time,” Sole said.
For those that arrive early, there will be pre-show cocktails and after the show, there will be an opportunity to meet the cast and an opportunity to get a photo.