USAG Baumholder gears up for annual Topper Awards

by Jacqui Haggerty

U.S. Army Garrison Baumholder’s Hilltop Theater will be presenting the campy hit, “Bat Boy: The Musical” Feb. 15, 16, 22 and 23 and March 1 and 2, and the Tony Award winning Broadway hit comedy, “God of Carnage,” April 5, 6, 12 and 13. Shows start at 7 p.m.

Both are entries for this year’s coveted Topper Awards.

Loosely based on a June 23, 1992, Weekly World News story, and critically acclaimed off-Broadway “Bat Boy: The Musical” is the story of a half boy/half bat creature, later named Edgar (Dominic Sparks), found living in a cave in rural West Virginia. Befriended by local veterinarian, Dr. Parker (Tim Ekola), his wife, Meredith (Cheryl Navo), and teenage daughter, Shelley (Juliana Knaup), Edgar’s only wish is to become a “normal” boy who is accepted by the townsfolk. Think “My Fair Lady” meets “Dracula,” with a touch of “Modern Family” thrown in for good measure.

Exploring the inherent themes of racism, revenge, acceptance and forgiveness through musical numbers styled after various genres from rock and rap, to horror film scoring with operatic overtones, “Bat Boy: The Musical” showcases the best and worst in each of us. As John Lahr of “The New Yorker” put it, this wild ride of a musical  is “smart, playful and funny … a giggling cult hit.”

“God of Carnage,” is billed on Broadway as “a comedy of manners … without the manners.” Michael and Veronica Novak (Tom Navo and Jacqui Haggerty) invite Alan and Annette Raleigh (David Hambleton Schwab and Melanie Robinson) to their Brooklyn apartment to discuss an unfortunate incident involving their two 11-year-old sons — an incident in which young Henry Novak had two teeth knocked-out at the hands of classmate Benjamin Raleigh.

What follows is the rapid disintegration of polite adult conversation into incredibly juvenile behavior on the part of all four adults, complete with the inevitable temper tantrums.

Between the incessant ringing of a cell phone, the disappearance of the family hamster and the tit-for-tat upstaging of all four “adults” by one another as they fight for their respective son’s innocence, “God of Carnage” brings out the child in all of us — whether we like it or not.

The Hilltop Theater is located in Bldg. 8218 on Smith Barracks, a 30-minute ride from Ramstein.

For more information or to reserve tickets, call 485-7244 or 06783-6-7244, or contact Hilltop Theater on Facebook.