Headed to Stageworks to see Dirty Rotten Scoundrels? Well, then…Welcome to the French Riviera!
When I first agreed to direct Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, I must admit that I had never seen the 1988 film with Steve Martin and Michael Cane. Nor had I listened to the score from the 2005 Broadway production starring John Lithgow & Norbert Leo Butz. As a self-proclaimed cinema nerd and an even bigger connoisseur of musical theater, I was shocked that I somehow let Dirty Rotten Scoundrels fly above my radar. After working on the show, however, I can assure you that I have corrected this atrocity.
With a catchy score and a script that’s filled with great one liners and outlandish gags, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels has proven itself to be quite a fun show to work on. Beyond the obvious joy of the music and the outlandish humor within the script, there’s also an undercurrent of toxic masculinity churning beneath the surface—should you choose to see it beyond the sight gags, upbeat score, and colorful costumes.
At the heart of the story, we have two men who are constantly taking advantage of women through their wit and charm, robbing them of not only their money but also of their emotions. Much like Harold Hill in The Music Man, they con their way from town to town, leaving behind a trail of broken-hearted women, whilst robbing them of any riches they may possess. Instead of the all-American plains of Iowa, however, the story plays out on the ritzy sands of Beaumont-Sur Mere located in the French Riviera. But for how long can this con go on? Without giving anything away, the arrogance and hubris of these two men are soon interrupted by a force that has been known to stop the world dead in its tracks and bring even the most powerful men to their knees: a smart woman.
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels marks my directorial debut at Stageworks, and I couldn’t be more proud of a debut. We love cavorting in the beautiful seaside town of Beaumont-Sur Mere and look forward to you joining us!