History, Unabridged

Theater Tuesday, December 11

The premise goes like this: You are a potential backer for a new off-Broadway musical extravaganza, The Big Bang!, which chronicles the history of the world from the big bang to the present. Aspiring writer/producers Gary and Wayne have borrowed a New York apartment to present you with a staged reading of sorts, though it's more like an exhaustive 90-minute pitch. To give you a real feel for how your funds will be spent on the 12-hour epic musical — budgeted at $83.5 million with 318 actors and 6,428 costume changes — the duo sings, dances and performs scenes as noteworthy figures like Adam and Eve, Attila the Hun, Christopher Columbus, the Virgin Mary, Pocahontas and Cher. It could be the most expensive, ostentatious production that never graces the stage. American Stage first produced The Big Bang! in the spring of '06 and it was so well-received that the theater kicks off a special holiday encore this weekend, with actors Matthew McGee and Candler Budd reprising their roles as Gary and Wayne. Through Dec. 23, 7:30 p.m. Tues.-Thurs., 8 p.m. Fri., 3 and 8 p.m. Sat., 3 p.m. Sun., American Stage, 211 Third St. S., St. Petersburg, $26-$32 ($10 students rush tickets available 30 minutes prior to curtain; "Pay What You Can Night" Tue., Dec. 11), 727-823-7529, americanstage.org.

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