Anchor ads are not supported on this page.

4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Audrey II: Fruitful and Multiplying

At the end of Little Shop of Horrors, Audrey II -- the carnivore plant that looks like a Great Green Shark -- vows to multiply, consume all humanity, and take over the world. Though its growth hasn't been colossal, Audrey II is in fact proliferating as we speak.

The musical, currently in a hot ticket production at Cygnet, is based on Roger Corman's 1960 movie. He originally called it The Passionate People Eater and shot it in two days (not counting night scenes on location at LA's Skid Row). "The one that survived the longest," Corman writes, "is the one I did the fastest and the cheapest."

Corman doesn't count several days of rehearsals, especially with the "primitive plant" worked by mono-filaments.

Marty Robinson, who worked for Jim Henson and Sesame Street, created the original stage Audreys in 1982. There were four: a cute little potted plant less than a foot tall; a hand-held, "walk-around" puppet; one that sits on the floor, large enough for a person to manipulate from within (and the favorite of those who have worked all four); and giganto-vegetatus with an eight-foot wide head, which requires extra stagehands to help it devour three people -- and threaten us all.

Theater companies wanting to stage Little Shop have several options regarding the Audreys. They can build their own, as the San Diego Rep did way back when, and then leased out the puppets to other productions.

When companies rent the script and score from MTI (Music Theatre International), they can also rent blueprints for building Robinson's original designs.

There's also a third option. At least three outfits -- Swazzle, CBC Creative, and Monkey Boys Productions -- rent the full package, based on Robinson's copyright.

Sean Murray, artistic director of Cygnet, went on line and researched the various possibilities. He needed Audreys large enough to fill the Old Town Theatre stage, "and nothing cartoony," since he wanted to return the musical back to its B&D, Skid Row roots.

He contacted Monkey Boys, which had the largest and creepiest Audreys, and which included videos on how to operate the puppets.

"We felt it would cost us the about the same to build as to rent," says Murray. They had no guarantee that a constructed puppet would work as well as one that had appeared in "many, many productions on the East Coast." So Monkey Boys' Audrey II shouts "feeeeeeeed me!" -- and turns humans into plant food -- at Cygnet.

Someone estimated that there are at least 500 sets of Audreys around the country. Most are in storage. Or so they say...

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

The Wilma to Power

Woo-ten waves goodbye
Next Article

Jakob Nowell takes up his father’s role as Sublime frontman

New lineup will perform at Bayfest on July 20

At the end of Little Shop of Horrors, Audrey II -- the carnivore plant that looks like a Great Green Shark -- vows to multiply, consume all humanity, and take over the world. Though its growth hasn't been colossal, Audrey II is in fact proliferating as we speak.

The musical, currently in a hot ticket production at Cygnet, is based on Roger Corman's 1960 movie. He originally called it The Passionate People Eater and shot it in two days (not counting night scenes on location at LA's Skid Row). "The one that survived the longest," Corman writes, "is the one I did the fastest and the cheapest."

Corman doesn't count several days of rehearsals, especially with the "primitive plant" worked by mono-filaments.

Marty Robinson, who worked for Jim Henson and Sesame Street, created the original stage Audreys in 1982. There were four: a cute little potted plant less than a foot tall; a hand-held, "walk-around" puppet; one that sits on the floor, large enough for a person to manipulate from within (and the favorite of those who have worked all four); and giganto-vegetatus with an eight-foot wide head, which requires extra stagehands to help it devour three people -- and threaten us all.

Theater companies wanting to stage Little Shop have several options regarding the Audreys. They can build their own, as the San Diego Rep did way back when, and then leased out the puppets to other productions.

When companies rent the script and score from MTI (Music Theatre International), they can also rent blueprints for building Robinson's original designs.

There's also a third option. At least three outfits -- Swazzle, CBC Creative, and Monkey Boys Productions -- rent the full package, based on Robinson's copyright.

Sean Murray, artistic director of Cygnet, went on line and researched the various possibilities. He needed Audreys large enough to fill the Old Town Theatre stage, "and nothing cartoony," since he wanted to return the musical back to its B&D, Skid Row roots.

He contacted Monkey Boys, which had the largest and creepiest Audreys, and which included videos on how to operate the puppets.

"We felt it would cost us the about the same to build as to rent," says Murray. They had no guarantee that a constructed puppet would work as well as one that had appeared in "many, many productions on the East Coast." So Monkey Boys' Audrey II shouts "feeeeeeeed me!" -- and turns humans into plant food -- at Cygnet.

Someone estimated that there are at least 500 sets of Audreys around the country. Most are in storage. Or so they say...

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Tortilla Curtain at San Diego Rep

Next Article

O'Neill in Bondage

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox Movies@Home — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close

Anchor ads are not supported on this page.