Does this wedding dress make my butt look dead? OK, that’s not actually a line from Daniel Sturman and R.C. Staab’s rock musical Zombie Wedding at Venue 9, The Ellen Stewart Theatre at La MaMa, but I feel like it could have been. Vampires and werewolves might be monopolizing the spotlight right now because of Twilight and True Blood, but zombies have been enjoying steady popularity since Max Brooks’ The Zombie Survival Guide hit bookshelves in 2003, making Zombie Wedding part of an abiding dynasty.
The show opens with our presumptive hero, Neil (Ryan Nearoff) receiving a packet of mysterious powder from a Haitian witch doctor (Tom Lyons) to take with him to the states, as a potential curative for Zombification, which is spreading rapidly through the jungle. Too bad it’s not a love potion, since Neil’s most immediate dilemma is that the woman of his dreams, Cat (Alison Lea Bender), is marrying a dickish Datsun salesman, Keith (Wes Hart) instead of him. Rounding out the able cast are Cat’s annoying teen brother Pat (Wesley Tunison) and her best gal pal, Deb (Sarah Aili) a pouffy-haired, dead ringer for Madonna’s Susan Thomas persona. (For unexplained reasons, the show is set in the 80’s. Perhaps to make it more rad?) Read more