Minneapolis playwright Greta Grosch has written a new musical called Lemonade for the Lawnboy with Jimmy Kennedy and Joe Weismann from The Smarts. The show also includes a phenomenal art installation.
David (Maxwell Collyard) is the Lawnboy and a recovering alcoholic. He lives with Janet (Sally Ann Wright), a friend’s mother, who took him in when he had no place else to go.
The musical is based on the book of the same name by David W. Cook II and Janet Letnes Martin… Hmm, those names sound familiar (see previous paragraph, in case you missed it). Cook is a Minnetonka native and known as the Flower Bomber. As soon as I entered the Minnetonka Theatre space, I was drawn in by his exhibit. It’s a mixture of drawings, paintings, sculptures and mixed media – and it’s whimsical and wonderful. This also serves to give you a sneak peek at the ladies you’ll meet in the show, and then you’ll want to go back afterwards and look at them all again.
David, the Lawnboy, lives in Janet’s garage and spends his time crafting his quirky ladies out of found objects. The catch is, they come to life in his head and each has their own, quite distinct personality. Which happen to be different aspects of David’s personality.
This fabulously endearing gaggle of women is brought to life by Joy Dolo, Roxanne Britz, Shana Eisenberg, Gail Ottmar, Wendy Short-Hays and Tina North. Bunny is the carefree party girl who always has a flask on her. Charlotte is the narcoleptic who forgets to eat. Mirabelle is the boisterous and lovable diva. Mrs Elmer Steele thinks she can do no wrong. And Mrs Jonathan Hurlinger actually can do no wrong.
Then Molly McCurdle enters the picture and somehow has an awareness of both worlds which throws David for a loop.
David and Janet start to quarrel more as they both start to face the reality that they’re really struggling with life. The music grows darker and has more of a rock edge as David’s mental state starts to spiral and all you can do is go along for the ride.
By the end of the show, David’s artwork fills the stage and it can only be described as a thing of beauty. This show isn’t your typical musical in regards to content or delivery, and I have to send many thank yous to Shana Eisenberg for bringing it to my attention. I’m so grateful that I got to see it!
Lemonade for the Lawnboy runs now through June 28 at Minnetonka Theatre. Tickets are available online.