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Village People's Randy Jones Hosts Reading of 'GRINDR The Opera'

by Winnie McCroy

EDGE Editor

Saturday March 28, 2015

Hang on to your ten-gallon hats, gays! Playbill just reported that Randy Jones, the original Cowboy from the disco supergroup the Village People will host a reading of Erik Johannes von Ramsom's "GRINDR The Opera" on April 7 and 9 in New York City.

The show features direction by Rachel Klein from "Around the World in 80 Days" and music direction by Charles Czarnecki of "Jersey Boys."

The show is billed as an unauthorized musical parody of the popular phone app that connects gay men together for liaisons. Press notes indicated that the libretto production will celebrate the "eponymous gay hook-up app that has sweepingly altered the course of modern gay intimacy."

The ensemble cast features William Michals from "Phantom" and "Beauty and the Beast" fame, DJ Bucciarelli of "Jesus Christ Superstar," Olle Roberg of "Brderna Lejonhjrta" and Erik Ransom "My Big Gay Italian Funeral" with Courter Simmons of "Jersey Boys" in the role of GRINDR itself.

Broadway World adds that the 90-minute event will be held on April 7 at 11:30 a.m. and April 9 at 3 p.m. at Roy Arias Studios, 777 8th Avenue, New York.

Described as a show "Where class meets crass comes camp!" "GRINDR The Opera" follows the story of four gay men of different 'Tribes,' each searching for a different form of human connection through the notorious hookup app, which serves as the fifth character in the piece.

Employing the sort of bawdy humor the subject matter demands, Von Ransom's libretto also explores "many issues of great depth that have become common themes as the human heart struggles to catch up with the age of the smart phone."

A recent sneak peek of the show at The West End sold out and has since been tightened and revised for this next phase which plans an Off-Broadway run in Fall of 2015.

To reserve complimentary seats to the reading, please contact [email protected].

Winnie McCroy is the Women on the EDGE Editor, HIV/Health Editor, and Assistant Entertainment Editor for EDGE Media Network, handling all women's news, HIV health stories and theater reviews throughout the U.S. She has contributed to other publications, including The Village Voice, Gay City News, Chelsea Now and The Advocate, and lives in Brooklyn, New York.