Montclair High School’s School of Visual and Performing Arts will present the Tony Award-winning “Urinetown: The Musical” for two weekends in May at the Little Theater, George Inness Annex, 141 Park St. 

Performances are May 6, 7, 13 and 14 at 7:30 p.m. and May 15 at 3 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students. A small number of tickets may also be available at the door before the performances, according to an SVPA press release.

The show will mark the return of the Montclair HIgh School spring musical to the Little Theater after an absence of two years. The annual event was canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic, and last year's musical, “As You Like It,,” was performed outdoors. 

"Urinetown was a top choice for its satirical approach to several social issues that continue to resonate today: the abuse of natural resources (such as water), the negative impact of rapacious capitalism (which often controls such resources), and the rise of authoritarianism,” SVPA co-director Brenda Pepper, who is directing the musical, said in the release.

Working with Pepper on the show are Gary Rudoren, MHS architecture teacher, who is the technical director, and Mary Blackburn, dance teacher, who is responsible for choreography and costumes, according to the release.

On March 30, “Urinetown” playwright Greg Kotis visited SVPA students to speak about his career in theater. Rudoren happened to know Kotis from their days together in Chicago theater in the late 1980s and ’90s.

Kotis almost left theater behind, heading to a college in Chicago with no theater program and with a plan “to do something reasonable.” But eventually, missing the fun and wanting to make friends, he fell back into theater.

“And then I just decided, I like this too much,” Kotis said. “I don't want to do anything else other than make theater.” 

Approximately 100 students are involved in the production, 40 cast members and 60 others on the various technical crews, the release says. 

Tickets and information about COVID-related restrictions are available at seatyourself.biz/montclairschoolarts. For more information, email the SVPA boosters at svpaboosters@gmail.com.

Riley Polaner, who plays Old Ma Strong, asked "Urinetown" writer Greg Kotis March 30 if there is anything he would like the audience to take away from the musical. (KATE ALBRIGHT/FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Riley Polaner, who plays Old Ma Strong, asked "Urinetown" writer Greg Kotis March 30 if there is anything he would like the audience to take away from the musical. (KATE ALBRIGHT/FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
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Jabari Daye, in red, asked if playwright Greg Kotis deals with writer's block March 30. (KATE ALBRIGHT/FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Jabari Daye, in red, asked if playwright Greg Kotis deals with writer's block March 30. (KATE ALBRIGHT/FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
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Jade Krouse, who plays Penelope Pennywise, asked "Urinetown" writer Greg Kotis a question about her role March 30. (KATE ALBRIGHT/FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Jade Krouse, who plays Penelope Pennywise, asked "Urinetown" writer Greg Kotis a question about her role March 30. (KATE ALBRIGHT/FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
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