ACTING OUT ‘Little Shop,’ ‘Heathers’ hit theaters in the ATL
Two new summer musicals in the ATL are perhaps best known from their film versions. Actor’s Express is about to open “Little Shop of Horrors,” the best-known adaptation of which is the 1986 movie starring Rick Moranis, Ellen Greene and Steve Martin. The hit musical, with book and lyrics by the late, openly gay playwright and lyricist Howard Ashman, is about a plant that grows to an enormous size and needs human blood to survive.
In “Little Shop of Horrors,” Trevor Perry plays one of the urchins/ Doo Wop Girls in full drag. Perry has already appeared in several versions of the musical.
“It’s one of my favorite shows of all time,” Perry admitted. “It imprinted me when I was younger, at an early age. The Doo Wop Girls are such an important part of the musical. Being one has always been a dream.”
He feels his fellow Doo Wop Girls – Brittani Minnieweather and Kiona D. Rese – have strengths that they incorporate into this version.
“Kiona is a fabulous dancer and Brittani is the funniest of us all,” said Perry, who regularly performs drag at various venues around town under the name Gwendolyn Van Cartier.
And OnStage Atlanta just debuted its take on “Heathers: The Musical,” based on the cult classic “Heathers,” which starred Winona Ryder and Christian Slater and was about a popular female clique at high school and the murderous outsider who disrupts them. Directed by out director Charlie Miller, “Heathers” shares a lot with its film counterpart.
“The two are similar, but they combine a few characters,” he said. “As far as the story, the movie picks up with Veronica already being a part of the [clique] Heathers, and in the musical there is an opening song about her being accepted and transformed into the group. We get her backstory. There are some tweaks here and there. It’s tighter, I think.”
The show was produced by Georgia State University, the only theater company in town to ever do so. That’s a bit of a surprise, given its high profile.
“I think it’s edgy in the sense that there are some dark themes – killing, murder,