This fall, Babylon’s Argyle Theatre presents The Full Monty, a musical with a book by Terrence McNally and a score by David Yazbek. Six unemployed Buffalo steelworkers, low on both cash and prospects, decide to present a strip act at a local club after seeing their wives’ enthusiasm for a touring company of Chippendales. They declare that their show will be better than the Chippendales dancers because they’ll go “the full monty”—meaning strip all the way. As they prepare for the show, working through their fears, self-consciousness and anxieties, they overcome their inner demons and find strength in their camaraderie.
“It’s an awesome show based on a movie of the same name that was incredibly popular in the ’90s,” said Eddie Egan, who plays Jerry Lukowski. “It’s about a group of guys who are out of work in Buffalo and they come up with an unconventional plan.”
He added, “They’re just a bunch of normal guys, and I think that’s what makes the show work. Everyone who comes to see the show is going to find themselves on the stage.”
Dave Bukatinsky is Jerry’s best friend, played by Max Wilcox.
“He is now dealing with the loss of his job. He’s dealing with some weight issues,” Wilcox said, joking that it was a well-cast part.
Wilcox noted that the main difference between the film and the musical is the setting—Sheffield, England vs. Buffalo, NY. So there are no English accents on these hometown boys.
Kristine Zbornik, who portrays Jennette, noted that the storyline mirrors real life.
“This thing of people not ever really getting back to work after that recession,” she said, “it’s more relevant in some ways than it was when it came out. It’s crazy.”
“People are like, ‘oh, The Full Monty, it’s about stripping. That sounds like a silly, light, fluffy musical,’” said John Hickok, who plays Harold Nichols. “Well, it is a really fun musical with some hunky looking guys who eventually take off some of their clothes, yes, but it also has great depth and universality. And it’s really great writing. It’s funny.”
Will they be going the full monty? You’ll have to go see the show to find out.
See The Full Monty at The Argyle, 34 West Main St., Babylon, through Oct. 20. For tickets and information, visit argyletheatre.com.
—Reporting by Waldo Cabrera