Charleston Light Opera Guild’s rendition of “The Full Monty” is quite the treat.
Despite a handful of microphone hiccups on opening night, the cast seemed to have a blast, and in turn, so did the audience.
I’ll admit, I was skeptical of this one. Having only heard of “The Full Monty,” I wasn’t sure a show of this nature could be pulled off in Charleston.
The story follows six men who have lost their jobs at a steel factory.
The main character, Jerry Lukowski, played by Brett Short, finds out that his ex-wife will be suing for full custody of their child after several missed child support payments.
Desperate for money, he and his friend Dave Bukatinsky, played by Michael D. Gore, decide to create a male strip-tease act.
The two recruit four other laid-off factory workers, Gary Lanham as Harold Nichols, Rick Payne as Noah “Horse” T. Simmons, Thaddeus Stambaugh as Malcolm MacGregor, and Trey Harris as Ethan Girard.
The men are forced to conquer their fears and insecurities in preparation for the show’s final number, when they promise to “bare it all” for the ladies.
Although the show is comedic in nature, it tackles real issues faced by blue-collar workers and men alike.
Despite different backgrounds, the men work together to overcome these issues and forge a strong bond in the process.
Short and Gore are hysterical in the lead roles. Both are relatable and funny.
Many of the musical numbers were hilarious. A few of my favorites are “Big Ass Rock,” sung by Short, Gore and Stambaugh; “The Goods,” sung by many of the cast members; and “Big Black Man,” sung by Payne and the guys.
The show brought many strong female characters, as well. Heather Allen, who played Georgie, Bukatinsky’s wife, brought high energy and a beautiful voice. “It’s a Woman’s World,” sung by Allen and a few other female roles, was so much fun to watch.
The orchestra, conducted by Bobby Hodges Jr. provided really fun tunes and hilarious sounds.
Many have asked whether this show contains full nudity — I’ll let you find out for yourself.