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Altar Boyz


Musique: Gary Adler • Michael Patrick Walker
Paroles: Gary Adler • Michael Patrick Walker
Livret: Kevin del Aguila

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Altar Boyz is a musical comedy with music and lyrics by Gary Adler and Michael Patrick Walker and book by Kevin Del Aguila (based on an idea by Ken Davenport and Marc Kessler). Centering on a fictitious Christian boy band from Ohio, the show satirizes, among other things, the phenomenon of boy bands and the popularity of Christian-themed music in contemporary American culture. It began an Off Broadway run on March 1, 2005 and closed on January 10, 2010, having played 16 previews and 2,032 regular performances making it the 9th longest-running Off-Broadway musical of all time.

The musical is presented in real time as the final concert of the national "Raise the Praise" tour staged by the five-member group the Altar Boyz. Four of the group's members, Matthew, Mark, Luke and Juan, apparently are named after the authors of the four canonical Christian Gospels. The fifth member is Abraham, who, the group explains in the show's opening number, is Jewish. The members of the group address the audience directly and refer to the venue and location in which the performance is taking place. The Altar Boyz perform their songs, with choreographed dancing in the style of boy bands, and present several scenes concerning the group and its origins, as well as each member's strengths and demons, as part of the concert.
During the show, the Altar Boyz repeatedly turn to a machine on stage, the "Soul Sensor DX-12," which has a display that they explain shows the number of burdened souls in the theatre. Their goal is to reduce the number on the machine to zero by the end of the concert.
Although many of the lines and lyrics in the show are susceptible to humorous or satirical interpretations, as is common in satire the performers do not acknowledge such double meanings in their performances.

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