Nominated in 1972 for 11 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and winning five of those coveted Awards, this hip, tongue-in-cheek, anachronistic fairy tale is based upon the life of Prince Pippin the Hunchback, the firstborn son of eighth century, Frankish king Charlemagne or Charles the Great, and invites audiences to join the fantastical journey of the rosy-cheeked prince famously looking for his “corner of the sky”. But his dad is a tyrannical bore, his step-mom is a Lady Macbeth in a mini skirt, and his half-brother Lewis is a twit. Returning home from school, Prince Pippin, sure of his superior qualities but lacking a purpose to which he can apply them, becomes a soldier for his father's army, but he gets upset by the killing and murders his father to stop the war. Finding he does not want to become the "puppet king" of discontented nobles in the Carolingian Empire, Pippin longs to discover the secret of true happiness and fulfillment. He is led by a mischievous Leading Player as he tries to find his place in life in the glories of the battlefield, the temptations of the flesh and the intrigues of political power. The youth's violent journey to fulfillment sets Pippin's quest into a tradition of psychological darkness, bringing an unusually creepy seriousness to Pippin's temptations and sinister machinations to the Leading Player. In the end, he finds the simple pleasures and domestic contentment of love, home and family is something to be quietly achieved. A rock opera filled with sex, S&M, and amputated limbs, this perky musical is meant to be at times unnerving and dark. Pippin is full of light pop music, magic, and soft-shoe dances, but it has one of the darkest and most complex themes in musical theater history.
Directed by John Thompson, Music Direction by Jeannie Cross.