Charles Bukowski was a hard-drinkin', casual womanizing, blue collar product of Los Angeles between the two world wars. His sizable body of work is rife with drunken parties, blurry moments of rage and a strong romantic streak for women he's loved and lost, as well as a deeply personal distaste for the workaday world he left behind when he pursued a career as a writer and poet. So of course, he's the perfect character for a musical. Spencer Green and Gary Stockdale's Bukowsical takes a modern approach to the rags-to-riches trope of the classic musical; our hero never finds the riches, but rather exults in his perpetual state of self-inflicted scummy delights. It's a profoundly scatological show that celebrates all the small joys of life at the bottom: loose women, wild parties and that effortless drift toward nowhere. As such, it's the perfect show for New Line Theatre, St. Louis' premier company when it comes to raw-nerve theatrics. New Line presents the first-ever regional production of Bukowsical as the nightcap for its current season, which is the equivalent of going out on a very low note -- and that's a compliment. Fans of the writer, fans of debauchery and fans of raunchy musicals, this is your show. Bukowsical roars into life Thursday through Saturday (May 30 through June 22) at the Washington University South Campus Theatre (6501 Clayton Road, Richmond Heights; 314-534-1111 or www.newlinetheatre.com). Tickets are $10 to $20.
Thursdays-Saturdays. Starts: May 30. Continues through June 22, 2013