Opening Tonight: “Reefer Madness!” Check Out This Article in The Grand Rapids Press

Actors’ Theatre’s final production of the 2010-2011 Season, Reefer Madness, was featured in The Grand Rapids Press recently. Check it out:

Actors’ Theatre brings ‘Reefer Madness’ to Grand Rapids

By Sue Merrell | The Grand Rapids Press

Published: Sunday, May 22, 2011, 6:00 AM

Photo Credit: T.J. Hamilton of the Grand Rapids Press. Over the top: Actors' Theatre will present "Reefer Madness," opening Thursday. Pictured from left, Jordan Hudson portrays Ralph, Sarah LaCroix plays Mae, Justin Kilduff is Jimmy Harper, Stephen Grey is Jack and Sarah LaJoye plays Sally.

GRAND RAPIDS — Have you heard about the menace of marijuana? According to the 1936 film “Reefer Madness,” the deadly drug is “Public Enemy Number One,” a scourge of society. Just one puff causes uncontrollable laughter, followed by emotional breakdown, violence and incurable insanity. No mention of the munchies.

Although written as a serious warning to parents, the film is so overly melodramatic that by the 1970s it had become a cult comedy, inspiring a 2001 musical satire and 2005 movie.

“It is campy, fun entertainment,” said Chris Grooms, who is directing the musical for Actors’ Theatre that opens Thursday. “But it has a history. There are factual references, statements people actually made that show how ridiculous the fears were at that time.”

The plot is similar to “The Rocky Horror Show” in that a pair of young innocents are corrupted, but in “Reefer Madness” the couple are seduced by demon weed instead of a mad scientist.

“People who like ‘Rocky Horror Show’ will like ‘Reefer Madness,’” Grooms said. “It has a similar style. Both shows go over-the-top.”

…be sure and read the rest of the article from the Grand Rapids Press, here on

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