Author: Cory Casciato

WESTWORD: Return to the Forbidden Planet

Spaceships, Shakespeare, mad scientists and monsters come together for a musical that marches to its own ’50s-rock-and-roll-inspired beat in “Return to the Forbidden Planet.”

Based loosely on the classic film “Forbidden Planet” (itself based on Shakespeare’s “The Tempest”), the show mixes in everything from a jive-dancing robot to a giant octopus to create a campy throwback to the era of drive-in classics and sock hops that’s bound to be unlike anything you’ve seen on stage before.

“You don’t see sci-fi on stage a lot, especially in a musical,” acknowledges Jenn Calvano, the show’s choreographer. “This is a kind of a fun, quirky, different style of musical to work on. It’s definitely one of the most outlandish shows I’ve ever worked on. There’s projection and sound design, and the set is incredible. The theater is going to be turned into a spaceship, which is going to be awesome. Not just the stage — the whole theater!”

Join Captain Tempest and his hearty crew of space explorers as they fly headlong into a mash-up of classic sci-fi, retro dance moves and the Bard himself when the show opens at 7:30 p.m. March 4 at the University Theatre on the University of Colorado Boulder campus. The production runs through Sunday, March 13, and tickets are $14, with student, senior and youth discounts available.

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