The Tattooed Lady Rocks Philadelphia’s Suzanne Roberts Theatre

-Brenda Hillegas
Photo by Johanna Austin

Run to the Philadelphia Theatre Company for your chance to see the world premiere rock musical, The Tattooed Lady!

The Tattooed Lady tells the story of the world’s first tattooed ladies and tattoo artists, how they broke ground, stood up for themselves and let everyone know that what they do with their own bodies is no one else’s business! For me, I was feeling some Six and Suffs vibes…and even a bit of Beetlejuice as the ghosts of sideshows past show up to remind us all how far we have come and what we still need to fight for.

The show highlights one of the biggest stars in sideshow history (fictional here), Ida Gibson and why she is now a straight-edged grandma who wants her granddaughter to stay on the “right” path. As the story unfolds, we learn more about who Ida was and who inspired her (and all of her ink).

This is seriously a show for any theatre lovers! With Jackie Hoffman (Hulu’s “Only Murders in the Building” and Broadway- Hairspray, Xanadu, The Addams Family, and On the Town) as Ida and a powerhouse cast with Broadway credits like Hadestown, Oklahoma!, Jagged Little Pill, Freestyle Love Supreme and more, you know you’re in for an epic production. The Tattooed Lady is written by Obie Award-winning playwright Erin Courtney (Map of Virtue) and Lortel-winner Max Vernon (KPOP on Broadway), developed and directed by Drama League-winner Ellie Heyman (Space Dogs) and choreographed by Mayte Natalio (How to Dance in Ohio). Hopefully it’s not too soon to start begging the creative team for a cast album, because The Tattooed Lady is filled with some great Broadway anthems for your playlists and big, belting voices.

This is a beautiful (and funny!) story about giving the middle finger to fitting in. Be comfortable in your own skin and stand up for what makes you happy. You’ll meet your tribe along the way.

I attended a preview performance of The Tattooed Lady earlier this week, but the show officially opened on Friday, the 4th. If you love musicals and live theatre at all, do not miss your opportunity to experience The Tattooed Lady before the rest of the world. Tickets are available here.

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