Thursday, August 25, 2011

A Very StarKid Post

About a year and a half ago I learned that there was a Harry Potter musical, called A Very Potter Musical, which had become a YouTube sensation. Um, a Harry Potter musical? I thought that only ever took place in my dreams?! But, *cough* I didn’t have enough time *cough*, I waited until the end of the summer in between summer studying and school to start watching it, and I instantly fell in love. Thus, another StarKid was born.

A Very Potter Musical is not your ordinary “boy is orphaned, boy lives under the stairs, boy learns he is a wizard and has to defeat the most powerful evil wizard of all time” story. This musical is bursting at the seams with humor, pop culture references, sarcasm, and geekdom (did I make that up?) galore.

Joey Richter as Ron, Darren Criss as Harry, and Bonnie Gruesen as Hermione in AVPM 

Harry is a total “bro”, Dumbledore has no problem being open about his sexuality (just ask Snape), and Draco rolls around on the floor with ambitions of going to Mars in a rocketship to attend Pigfarts. While watching, I burst out laughing so many times that my mom kept coming to check on me to make sure I was okay. You will never look at the Potter characters the same way again (anytime I watch one of the Harry Potter films, I am so darn disappointed that Draco isn’t rolling on the floor!).

Lauren Lopez as Draco Malfoy in AVPM

And if you couldn’t tell by the amount of humor and wit that is in the writing, then the songs will most certainly prove to you that these kids are damn talented! A Very Potter Musical was the brain child of a group of friends (one of whom is Darren Criss of Glee), now known as the theater company Team StarKid, during their senior year at the University of Michigan. If there is anything that can shame me into stop using “not having enough time” as an excuse for things, it is these guys. Writing words, music, and lyrics, building sets, rehearsing, and performing an entire musical on their own during, literally, their last few weeks of college? Way to make the rest of us look bad guys! Not only that, but Team Starkid continues to write and perform original shows and scores, including, A Very Potter Sequel (prequel to A Very Potter Musical), Me and My Dick, and, most recently, Starship (“Damn that G.L.E.E.! They’re always making twisted abominations of everything!”).

Team StarKid, based in Chicago, is able to continue to put on shows, primarily, as a result of the huge fan base that has grown as a result of AVPM, and which is affectionately known as “StarKids”. Honestly, I don’t think the fans would LET these guys stop writing shows even if they wanted to! Tickets for shows and events literally sell out in minutes, and Team StarKid merchandise can barely be kept in stock (although I managed to snag myself a pair of totally awesome blue StarKid sunglasses!).


I am also happy to say that I have made some small contributions to this fandom by insisting that all of my friends watch AVPM until they have now become as infatuated as I am. Proof of point: my friends and I spent the majority of our spring break at the beach quoting AVPM and rolling around talking about rocketships (and for those of you who may not know us that well…we were sober). In fact, there may, or may not, be a video of me rolling on the floor one morning in my pajamas asking for a rocketship. You will never know for sure. But, despite this success of corrupting my friends, I will not rest until I bring everyone I know down with me. And if you are reading this, that now includes you.

Joseph Walker as Prof. Umbridge in a A Very Potter Sequel

So go watch the shows on YouTube, listen to the songs on iTunes or Bandcamp, or check out their supermegafoxyawesomehot (had to throw that in somewhere) merchandise.

But if you are still unconvinced that Team StarKid is totally awesome, then take a look at all of the talent that this group has to offer in addition to their production company. Darren Criss, who plays Harry Potter and wrote the entire scores for AVPS and Starship, is the most publicly-visible member due to his shot to Glee-fame, but in addition to his Glee role, he is one swoon-worthy musician (and my kindred spirit in awkwardness). Joe Moses (an extremely loveable, yet creepy, Snape) performs one-man comedy shows in New York. Nick and Matt Lang, the chief writers for Team StarKid recently illustrated The Bully Book. Then, there is also Lauren Lopez (a.k.a. my hero), Joey Richter, Joe Walker, Dylan Saunders, and so many others, all who never cease to astonish me with their vocal and acting abilities. Sometimes I wonder if the Galactic League of Extraterrestrial Exploration discovered these guys on Talented-Beyond-Measure Planet (that’s only a few light-years away from Farm Planet) and brought them to Earth to spread the delight.

If you were completely lost by that last sentence, then go watch this.

Guess what? Now that I have some free time, I plan on watching all of the StarKid productions all over again!

If you haven’t heard from me in awhile, I either died of laughter, or I FINALLY found a rocketship and went away to Pigfarts.

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