Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson! Premiere’s at Pipe Dreams Studio Theatre

A new play is coming to Pipe Dreams and it’s Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson! The play is about the founding of the Democratic Party, told in a comedic rock musical way. The music and lyrics were written by Michael Friedman, and the play comes from a book by Alex Timbers.

Here at Millikin, Brittney Brown is directing the show. According the Pipe Dreams website the show is, “a mix of historical fact and invention, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson uses the story of America’s controversial seventh president to investigate the attraction and terrors of American populism, using a blend of outrageous comedy, anarchic theatricality and infectious emo rock.” The show spotlights populism, the Indian Removal Act, and Jackson’s relationship with his wife, Rachel.

The cast includes, Geoffrey Eggleston as Andrew Jackson, Crystal Prusek as Rachel Jackson, David Blakeman as Martin Van Buren, and Kevin Stoffel as multiple parts.

Prusek, excited to work on the show, shared her opinions.

“Working on this show was a lot of fun. It’s a very edgy show that has a kind of ‘in your face attitude’ so it was fun to play with having no rules in rehearsals,” Prusek said. “Also the cast is amazing, I can honestly say that I love working with each and every one of them. We’re all able to make a very creative and safe environment together, which I think is really important, especially with us being students.”

Stoffel weighed in as well saying that Bloody is not like all musicals.

“The biggest difference with this musical is its punk rock musical styling,” Stoffel said. “The songs aren’t anything like a Golden Age musical like Oklahoma!. It’s much more similar to the music of punk bands like Panic! At the Disco. Learning how to sing like that type of genre has been a cool learning experience.”

Prusek also shared that the title had a significant meaning to the show.

“Andrew Jackson did a whole lot for our country as far as having equal representation for the common man and gaining control of certain states for the American Government,” Prusek said.  “In doing that, many people died at Jackson’s hand. I think this musical is trying to get that information out there because in school we only ever hear of Andrew Jackson as a hero. Yes, he did many great things, but there were tragedies that happened along the way.”

Prusek also commented on the deeper meaning of the musical, beyond the entertainment factor.

“The most unique thing about this musical is that it takes away all the stops, it’s not afraid to offend anyone,” Prusek said. “In my point of view, the main purpose of this musical is to educate and it does certain things to get your attention.  Now some of the ways it gets the audiences attention is by saying things that are harsh and sometimes too real, but that’s all in the name of education and showing that some of the things done in the past were unacceptable.”

Hoping the audience will enjoy the show, but still grasp the messages, Prusek provided some insight on what to expect from the show.

“The audience can expect to laugh a whole lot because this musical is hilarious. They can also expect a kick ass concert experience with moments that’ll hit them right in the feels.  But seriously I hope everyone has as great a time watching as we are having on stage. Everyone in this cast is so talented and we have all worked very hard on this show.  My main goal is that people leave this show with some morsel that they can take with them and ponder.”

“I think the audience is really going to be blown away by the type of show we are presenting,” Stoffel said. “It’s definitely going to be something they would never expect.”

The show will run March 20th through the 29th at 7:30pm except for 27th which will be at midnight, and the 29th at 2pm. You can get tickets now at Kirkland Fine Arts Center.