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Break the "Wind"

Olympia Little Theater stages inside comedic look at civil war epic

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Classic shows are always fun, but spoofs of classics are generally hilarious. A South Sound case in point is Olympia Little Theater’s staging of “Moonlight and Magnolias,” which opens this week.

This Ken Ludwig comedy takes a look behind the curtain of the golden age of Hollywood in a fictional way, of course. The spoof follows the tale of the legendary producer David O. Selznick after he shuts down his magnum opus “Gone with the Wind” only to lock himself into his office for a week to hammer out a revamped script with noted director Victor Fleming and writer Ben Hecht. 

Trouble comes when everyone learns that Hecht didn’t do his homework, never having read Margaret Mitchell’s best-selling novel.

Being the showbiz folks they are Flemming and Selznick find themselves acting out the show in an effort to bring him up to speed on the classic show about the Southern plantation during the time of the Civil War and its aftermath. The show unfolds after the fast-paced script tosses in some peanuts and bananas and a heavy dose of writer’s block fueled by pressure to succeed.

What makes the show work so well is the way the words play out with the back story from a movie that everyone in the audience has seen at least a billion times. Those in the know also will know that there were troubles on the set of the making of the movie and then take that extra step to create the scene in their mind so completely that the play becomes a historical novel of sorts. Certainly the actual troubles with the “Gone with the Wind” script weren’t solved this hilariously, but it sure would have been much more fun if they had.

The play opens Friday, Jan. 18. The play runs at 7:55 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays and at 1:55 p.m. on Sundays through Feb. 10. Tickets are $10 to $12 and available at Yenney Music Co. on Harrison Avenue. They also are available by calling 360.943.7500 or through The theater is located at 1925 Miller Ave. N.E. in Olympia.


The golden outflow of comedy rushes from every page of the “Urinetown” script. The comedy is the work of a mind that operates differently from those housed in the skulls of the rest of us. It is just an odd, yet completely believable script in a “Soylent Green” and “Logan’s Run” sort of way. The futuristic metropolis is having a water shortage so severe that the city authorities have outlawed all private bathrooms as a way to save money through fewer flushes. A private company holds the contract for all of the toilets in the city, causing price hikes just to ... “drop the kids off at the pool” or “redeem a coffee rental.”

All goes against the flow when the people rise up against the corporate honey buckets with song and dance numbers that are quick and punchy as long as you have a brain fast enough to catch the one-liners.

Tacoma Musical Playhouse stages the musical through Feb. 3. Shows are Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. The show plays at the stage at the historic Narrows Theatre, 7116 Sixth Ave. Tickets are $23 for adults, $21 for students, seniors and military, and $16 for children 12 and under.  Call 253.565. 6867 or visit

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