Theatre Review: Bomb On a Bus

Who knew we needed a musical version of the movie Speed? Apparently Paige Scott did, and hooked up with Q Artistry to make it happen.
This parody of the 1994 movie features performances by Carrie Morgan as sweetly intense Anna (Annie), Logan Moore as the dim-witted Jack, Dave Ruark in a Dennis Hopperesque performance as psycho-bomber Walter, Clay Mabbitt as Harry and not-Laurence Fishburne, Kristin Heintz as hilarious geologist and crazy cat lady Helen, Pat Mullen as Spencer the doofus tourist, Tiffanie Bridges as the bus driver Pam, and Brian G. Hartz as passenger Ortiz. The set design is dominated by a big bus (naturally), with a second level for the off-bus action. And there are shadow puppets too, to explain bits of the story. The show is deptly directed by Ben Asaykwee, who knows how to get the most from his performers.
Bomb On a Bus plot follows the same general lines as the original film: Crazed bomber Walter decides to get revenge on Jack for ruining his career as a terrorist by rigging a bomb on a bus. The bomb will explode if the speed of the bus drops below 50 miles an hour; Jack leaps on the bus to warn everyone. Terror ensues, especially after the bus driver is incapacitated and Anna must drive. Jack figures out how to get the passengers off the bus before it blows up, and the mad bomber gets his just desserts.
However, Scott’s rendition adds a few musical numbers and a twist — where exactly is the bomb? (No spoilers here, you’ll have to see it.)
Bomb On a Bus weaves pop culture references throughout, especially to other films the original stars were in such as The Matrix and Miss Congeniality. Funny, innovative, and entertaining, make sure you catch this production at the Irvington Lodge before it closes April 5. Tickets are $15 for students/seniors, $18 for general admission, available at Brown Paper Tickets online or call 677-5317.