If you’re a member of the Avenue Q cast, the answer seems to be simple: get a new job. That’s right, the London show is closing after four and a half years of madness. To be fair, the idea of writing the character of Gary Coleman out of the script after the real actor’s recent death probably contributed to the closure, even though the move was later retracted in favour of modifications, at least for the Broadway version.
I’ve heard Avenue Q described as just an adult puppet show, but it’s much more than that. The use of puppets makes it a much more difficult show to perform in than a standard theatre production; despite cynics seeing it as laziness on behalf of the actors, you need a lot more coordination to perform as a puppet, especially the voice actors, some who voice two or more puppets. There’s a lot of skill in the show, and puppeting must be quite difficult to manage.
I’ve seen the show twice now, at different West End theatres, and while it’s definitely not for kids, it’s one of a rare species: adult, but not descending into the slutty, porn side of things. That’s possibly part of it’s attraction, and also why the puppets are a good idea (imagine puppet sex on stage) – all the same, I love it as a show.
It’s a unique feature on the West End, and while I long to see what will replace it, I’ll also miss it’s departure. We waited outside the stage door both times, and the cast are really nice people. I’ll remember those memories as much as the show itself. Of course, the closure could only be for now, but if you haven’t experienced the awesome musical yet, get yourself to London before October 30th.