Written by Jeanie Linders, Menopause The Musical debuted March 28, 2001 in Orlando, Florida. The original cast members were Shelly Browne as the Power (later Professional) Woman, Patti McGuire as the Iowa Housewife, Pammie O'Bannon as the Earth Mother and Wesley Williams as the Soap Star. The musical follows four women shopping for lingerie at a Bloomingdale's sale sing 25 songs about chocolate cravings, hot flashes, loss of memory, nocturnal sweats, and sexual predicaments. The lyrics parody popular music from the baby boomer era, and includes the numbers "Stayin' Awake" and "Puff, My God I'm Draggin'."
The show's success Off-Broadway led to a number of productions across the country presented by theatrical producers GFour Productions in Detroit, Chicago, and Los Angeles Boston, Denver, and Las Vegas, where it is currently housed at the Harrah's Las Vegas.
International productions have been put up in Australia, Canada, Israel, Italy, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, the United Kingdom, South Africa, South Korea, and Spain. Local references in the show are customized to the location of the performance; for example, the 'Iowa Housewife' became 'Dubbo Housewife' in Australia and 'Waikato housewife' in New Zealand; America's Bloomingdale's became Smith & Caugheys in New Zealand and Marks & Spencer in London.
The original Orlando production played most recently at the Plaza Theatre. The Off-Broadway production officially opened at Theatre Four on April 4, 2002, after a month of previews, and closed in the spring of 2006, logging more than 1500 performances. A Las Vegas production has been running since 2006.A national tour of Menopause the Musical was presented to raise funds and awareness for the fight against ovarian cancer.
Leslie Fischer at chicagocritic.com said "bring the waterproof mascara because you'll laugh so hard, you'll cry. With humor and compassion, writer, producer, and lyricist Jeanie Linders has captured the experiences of every woman in her 40s and 50s." Genessee Kagy of the Daily Californian wrote that "Menopause's collection of great oldies, clever tongue-in-cheek lyrics and entertaining dance routines prevented me from making any I-Need-Air trips to the restroom despite the fact that I hadn't felt like such a fraud since I turned eighteen-years old. Over 90 percent of the audience were women more than twice my age..."
Menopause the Musical official websiteReferences