Choice – The Musical! will premiere at the 3rd Annual Premier Premieres! A Weekend of New Musical Comedies Festival, June 22nd – 24th at the MCL theater in Chicago, IL. The Choice team is directed by Jeff Bouthiette a music director for The Second City, and Composed by Brad Kemp. Script and lyrics are written by comedians Sheri Flanders, Josh Flanders, Kimber Russell and Kerry Santoro.
Head writer and comedic musical actress Sheri Flanders says: “I came up from the idea for Choice during a student musical improv show when an audience member shouted the suggestion of “Abortion”. We all took a sharp breath in, knowing that things could go wrong very easily. The show went very well and the idea stuck with me years later.” Flanders gathered a team of pro-choice comedy writers and they submitted and were accepted to stage their musical in the Premier Premieres festival.
Sheri Flanders is a recent graduate of the Second City Conservatory, music program, iO improv program and musical program. She is proud to be one of a small handful of African American female voices in the Chicago improv comedy community, a community that has historically struggled with diversity. Choice – the Musical and her upcoming two person sketch revue Flanders (co written and performed with her husband Josh Flanders, directed by Anthony LeBlanc on June 6th and 13th in the Beat Lounge) represents her post graduate debut.
Sheri says “I don’t expect a comedic musical to change anyone’s mind. However, I do think that making light of the controversy surrounding abortion helps to lift the societal taboo around conversation. No woman should feel shame in exercizing her legal right to choose. Laughter is often a great antidote for making difficult conversations easier to have.” Flanders and the Choice cast hopes to raise money for pro-choice organizations such as Planned Parenthood.
Choice – The Musical! is a lighthearted take on a subject that many consider no laughing matter – abortion! In the age of Trump when reproductive rights are being rolled back weekly, and Roe vs Wade is in jeopardy of being overturned, what better time to send up the intractable struggle that overwhelms the news every election cycle and prevents Americans from getting anything else done.
Choice follows the adventures of Ellie a young pro-life protestor, who confronts pro-choice advocates face to face for the first time. Instead of saving souls, Ellie is shocked to discover that she is in need of salvation from the wild ride of life.