Little Shop of Horrors Opens the Menlo Drama Season
Menlo Drama kicks off its 2022-23 season with the succulent musical of botanical misadventures Little Shop of Horrors at the Spieker Center for the Arts, with three pre-Halloween performances on October 28, 29, and 30. Written by Howard Ashman and Alan Menken (the creative pair behind Disney’s Beauty of the Beast, The Little Mermaid, and Aladdin), Little Shop of Horrors tells the story of bashful plant store employee Seymour Krelborn, whose troubles at work and love for fellow employee Audrey Fulquard, inspire him to attract more customers with a rare flower he has named “Audrey II.”
When Seymour accidentally pricks his finger, the sickly plant suddenly comes to life and announces its appetite for blood instead of water. The horrifying revelation sets Seymour on a treacherous path to save the world from the carnivorous plant and learn some important lessons along the way. “I think the show speaks to values and integrity,” says Director of Creative Arts and Upper School Drama Steven Minning. “We see our hero go from modest beginnings through lies, greed, and failure. It’s about how our values can get distorted and what we can do to get them back. I think that’s a really good lesson right now.”
“It’s a musical about a timid clerk who sells his soul to a man-eating cactus,” he continues. “It’s not your usual musical comedy bill-of-fare, but the show is as entertaining as it is exotic. It’s a perfect show for students, family, horticulturists, sci-fi fans, and anyone with a taste for the outrageous!”
Ten years ago, Minning directed Little Shop of Horrors as his first play at Menlo, and revisiting it at the new Spieker Center to cap his first decade at the School was intentional. “With our new Spieker Center, I thought it would be the perfect fit to bring this wildly entertaining show to our new stage, in a big way, and share it with our wider community.”
Menlo Drama Department strives to “Give Back” both on and off stage, raising more than $52,000 for nonprofit organizations. For Menlo’s production of Little Shop of Horrors, students have decided to donate funds from ticket sales to CORA, a San Mateo nonprofit that offers counseling, emergency housing, shelter, and legal support to those who have survived domestic abuse. CORA was chosen by the cast because its work resonates with themes presented in the show.
For tickets, please visit www.menloschool.org/tickets.