Joey Price was attending San Francisco State University three and a half years ago when he was struck with an idea. ” I became interested in writing a musical,” says Price. “Any musical.” In the face of writers block, something struck him: emo. And it came in the form of the title of his future piece – Emo! The Musical.
“My first idea was that it would be really funny to see emo kids doing musical theatre,” Price explained in an email. “I felt like they were polar opposite ideas and would do well together, with the happiness of musical theatre juxtaposed with the sadness of emo.” Yet Price’s subject matter actually worked out for his benefit, as he digressed: “I realized that, yes they are opposite in this sense, but they also have a lot in common since they both involve this incredibly over-emotionality.” Price was approached by a friend who heard of his project and asked him to write up a 15 minute script for her directing class; in February 2006, the short version of Emo! The Musical was premiered at SFSU to what Price calls an “incredibly good reception.”
Flash forward to the present and Price has a full script, cast and crew ready to perform a fully-fledged version of Emo! The Musical. From the fingertips of writer/director Joey Price, here is a breakdown of the musical:
Written and directed by Joey Price and choreographed by Sheena McIntyre, Emo! The Musical is a new musical satire about angst-ridden teens facing adversity. Will Colin let his best friend Chaz be with his forbidden, cheerleading love? Can the emo kids break the chains of societal norms? Will they be able to save the world from impending asteroid doom?! Through song, dance and ridiculousness, Emo! The Musical answers those very important questions.
The musical, clearly created in the warmest of humors, presents an interesting case; how is emo received as a cultural movement to those not involved in the subculture? Further, how do people respond, especially artistically, to the presence of a culture/genre that proves to be such a compelling subject of pop consumption today. In many cases, the truths of how the mainstream objectively observes a subculture can easily be seen in the satire of said subcultures. And its clear from Price’s articulation, the play’s description, and the photos of the show, that Emo! The Musical is a great place to see how people have reacted to emo.
Emo! The Musical is presented by the Beards Beards Beards Theatre Company at the Boxcar Playhouse in San Francisco. It officially starts today (August 8th) and runs until August 30th.
And now for the musical moment that currently stands as the iconic presentation of emo as it’s perceived within the mainstream…
My Chemical Romance – The Black Parade video: