Field Hockey Hot (11th Hour: Adrienne Theatre)

Inspired lunacy: the cast of Field Hockey Hot at 11th Hour (photo by Chrissy K Photography)

Inspired lunacy: the cast of Field Hockey Hot at 11th Hour (photo by Chrissy K Photography)

Remember that Robert Frost’s poem about the importance of taking the right road?   Well, Monday night, I took the low road – and I couldn’t be happier.

Before getting to Field Hockey Hot – 100 minutes of sublime lunacy in music that no theatregoer can afford to miss – let’s celebrate 11th Hour Theatre.  This company has grown steadily in stature, and their recent musicals-in-concert series showcased an ensemble of tremendous energy and talent.

Field Hockey Hot is their first original musical, and composer-lyricist-book writer Michael Ogborn’s show fits them like a glove.

What do you need to know about it?  The subject – sort of – is high school sports.  Or maybe it’s the importance of winning.  Or young love.

But what you really need to know is it’s wildly irreverant.  Harvard, the Shroud of Turin, self-help tapes, Title IX, Elton John – nothing is sacred… especially not pop-rock musicals, which are skewered with laser-beam brilliance, and palpable (ahem) Glee.

You also need to know that it features the fabulous Jennie Eisenhower, who has reinvented herself again – from a pretty ingenue soprano, to a serious dramatic actress, and now, a physical comic and powerhouse vocal belter.  And the material that Ogborn gives her?   Let’s just say Merman had her “Rose’s Turn,” Idina has her “Defying Gravity” — and now, Eisenhower has her “Vicariously.”

Rob Tucker and Jennie Eisenhower in Field Hockey Hot at 11th Hour (photo by Chrissy K Photography)

Rob Tucker and Jennie Eisenhower in Field Hockey Hot at 11th Hour (photo by Chrissy K Photography)

The rest of the ensemble is every bit as dazzling vocally and histrionically – and Ogborn gives each perfomer ample opportunity to shine.  Megan O’Brien’s direction and Ellie Mooney’s choreography are full of inventive charm, as are the minimal but wonderful scenery and costumes.

I suppose you should know that there are a lot of sex puns. Also, that Field Hockey Hot has no weighty moral agenda.  (That’s putting it mildly – compared to this show, Legally Blonde looks like Parsifal.)

Hooray, say I!  Think of it as similar to a Chipwich.  The nutritional value may be scant.  But while you’re eating, it’s sheer bliss.

The cast of Field Hockey Hot at 11th Hour (photo by Chrissy K Photography)

The cast of Field Hockey Hot at 11th Hour (photo by Chrissy K Photography)

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