Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-07-10
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



THEATER REVIEW GRINDR The Opera (An Unauthorized Parody)
by James R. Wilke

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Book, music and lyrics by: Erik Ransom

At: The Buena, Pride Arts Center, 4147 N. Broadway. Tickets:; $20-40. Runs through: July 28

Looking for an easy way to chat with and meet other gay/bisexual men for immediate or long-term intimacy? There's an app for that! Looking for a show in which gay/bisexual characters explore an app that provides an easy way to chat and meet for immediate or long-term intimacy? There's a musical for that, too!

It's called GRINDR The Opera ( An Unauthorized Parody ). But don't let the title fool you. While writer/composer Erik Ransom has created an award-winning show that—like traditional opera—is sung throughout, the musical stylings of GRINDR The Opera form a tapestry of comedic songs in a wide range of genres and homages to popular tunes.

Sporting an all-male cast, this timely show is a witty, raunchy comedy replete with all gay characters. Even the feminine title character of the show—Grindr herself, personified— is played by a man in drag, sung in countertenor by actor Bruno Rivera. And helping Grindr weave her temptress' web of lust, love and impossibly quick costume changes are a pair of androgynous dancing Grindrettes, Occulto and Dilectus, played with gusto by Andrew Flynn and Brandon Krisko.

The storyline rotates between a set of four archetypal personalities as they engage Grindr in often relatable situations. We see the antics of Jack, a sex-hungry twink, and Don, a closeted daddy, played by Evan Wilhelm and John Cardone ( whose acting chops make up for their vocal pitfalls ). And then we find the budding romantic duo of Devon, a relationship-minded doctor, and Tom, a cynic whose heart finally opens to love. Played by Justin Cavazos and Ben Broughton, these two steal the show with touching duets like "You Can Leave" and "We Met on Grindr."

The most show-stopping moment of the show occurs when Broughton sings the heartfelt power ballad "Trick of the Mind"—arguably one of Erik Ransom's most touching and original songs. Yet love and lust in this brave, new, seemingly anonymous world of Grindr is not always what it promises to be, as our four characters come to discover.

Certainly an entertaining, laugh-out-loud funny romp, GRINDR The Opera does not, however, address many of the darker issues dating apps have exacerbated in gay society: body-image obsessions, drugs, diseases, discrimination or the superficiality of photos as the primary ticket to intimacy along gay men. But perhaps the gaps we see in GRINDR The Opera only serve to tell us that the gay dating app that "started it all" is indeed a more complicated, mysterious siren than we in the gay community ever realized. And we can at least thank Erik Ransom and the team of artists at Pride Arts for bringing our attention to her.

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

THEATER Strange Heart Beating 2019-07-16 - Playwright: Kristin Idaszak At: Cloudgate Theatre at the Frontier, 1106 W. Thorndale Ave. Tickets:; $5-$45. Runs through: July 28 There's potential for ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW The Drag Seed 2019-07-15 - Author: David Cerda Directed by: Cheryl Snodgrass. At: Mary's Attic, 5400 N. Clark St. Tickets: : $20-44; Runs through: Aug. 24 ...

Gay News

Auditorium Theatre receives Outstanding Historic Theatre Award 2019-07-15 - ( CHICAGO, IL ) On July 14, 2019, the Auditorium Theatre received the League of Historic American Theatres' ( LHAT ) Outstanding Historic ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW King Lear 2019-07-10 - Playwright: William Shakespeare At: Redtwist Theatre, 1044 W. Bryn Mawr Ave. Tickets: and 773-728-7529; $35-$40. Runs through: Aug. 4 What ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Head Over Heels 2019-07-10 - Songs: The Go-Go's; Conception and original book: Jeff Whitty; Book adaptation: James Magruder At: Kokandy Productions at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave.. ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW The Flower of Hawaii 2019-07-10 - Authors: Paul Abraham ( composer ); Alfred Grunwald & Fritz Lohner-Beda ( librettists ). At: Chicago Folks Operetta, Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont ...

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW The Tempest 2019-07-10 - Author: William Shakespeare At: Lincoln Park and various other Chicago public parks. Tickets:; Tickets are free, no reservations required. Runs through: Aug ...

Gay News

Critics' Picks 2019-07-10 - Six, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, through Aug. 4—This acclaimed and proudly feminist British fringe musical smartly reimagines the six wives of King Henry VIII ...

Gay News

Teen performer talks Jimmys, being on Broadway 2019-07-10 - He was standing on an escalator in the lobby of a Times Square theater when the magnitude of what Jacob Simon was experiencing ...

Gay News

'Ms. Blakk' now running thru July 21 2019-07-08 - Due to popular demand, Steppenwolf Theatre Company has added seven more performances to the run of Ms. Blakk For President. Now playing through ...


Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.







About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.