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Why a musical about a serial killer?

First, this show isn't what you may think.  It's about much more.

This case is part of American History- a buried secret from our past. The story is stranger than fiction. It can even serve as an allegory- a mirror held up to our culture's darkest parts. It exemplifies how we, as a society, tend only to see what we want. It illustrates how fear, shame, and repression can breed apathy. Crawlspace  reimagines this story and confronts unsettling truths head-on. 

Music can elevate words, convey emotion, and elegantly communicate even the most difficult stories. We believe it makes this tragic and cautionary tale more accessible- transforming and humanizing the dark subject matter into an experience that transcends the sensationalism so often attached to it. John was a showman of extremes. He had vastly different sides to his character, and the pain he inflicted on others was deep. The show does not glorify him or his actions.  John is characterized as he was in life- a confusing man of contradictions and cruelty. We present his abusive childhood and repressed sexuality as true parts of his life- not to justify his violence. This is a psychological thriller that deals with concepts of evil, cycles of abuse, the criminal justice system, sexual stigmas, and mental health issues- issues very relevant to our current times. It poses serious questions, and where there are no answers, none are given. In presentation and tone, it is similar to Sondheim's Assassins. 

​If you have an open-mind and enjoy being challenged by theater, Crawlspace offers a layered story with much to explore.  Themes of repression, fear, shame, outcasts, judgment, obsession, and cycles of violence are also prevalent throughout- making it surprisingly relevant to our current times. Most importantly- it's not what you might expect.  We encourage you to Look Beneath the Surface.  You might be surprised by what you find.

We hope to leave audiences with questions to ponder:​


Does evil exist?

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