‘Cornerstone of an era’

For students looking for entertainment in the final stretch of the semester, RTOP Theatre presents “Anything Goes,” a classic feel-good Broadway musical.

“It’s from the 30s; it has surprisingly held up to the test of time. It is still funny,” artistic director Anthony Luetkenhaus said.

Luetkenhaus describes the show as the “cornerstone of an era,” as it is still popularly performed almost 90 years after it was written in 1934.

“The plot is kind of loose, but the jokes are rapid fire and very funny. There’s a lot of mistaken identity, and a lot of really quick physical comedy,” he said.

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“Anything Goes” is largely representative of 1930s humors through the use of predictable punch lines.

“It is very corny; you can see the jokes coming from a mile away, but the punch lines are still funny, because the humor is in the timing of the situation,” Luetkenhaus said.

The show features gangsters, show girls and debutantes on a transatlantic cruise.

“It really is just entertainment. It’s two hours where you don’t have to think, you can just sit in your seat and have a good laugh,” Luetkenhaus said.

This is RTOP’s first time performing “Anything Goes” as it follows the theatre’s tradition of big, crowd-pleasing musicals.

“I think a lot of other shows have copied devices from this show because it has been so well written and because the music is so good, it has been able to be around as long as it has,” Luetkenhaus said. “It is important to see shows that have that kind of longevity.”

Cast and crew have spent extensive amounts of time and effort in preparation for opening night on Thursday.

“My favorite part about being in ‘Anything Goes’ is the collaborative art that goes on and just seeing everyone come together over big musical numbers, the lighting and the set. They’re all beautiful in this show,” ensemble member Michael Todd said.

The show features characters in interchanging roles with fast paced set changes and ongoing chaos.

“I really enjoy switching roles quickly — quick costume changes, putting on a completely different character — because it is challenging and fun,” Todd said.

“Anything Goes” offers a comical, light-hearted experience for students and community members around the Palouse.

“It’s a great way to escape the end of the year and the hectic season of finals. The more support that audiences gives by seeing shows, the better quality shows will become and thrive here on the Palouse,” Todd said.

“Anything Goes” will be performed nightly at 7:30 p.m., opening April 7 through April 17. Matinee performances will be at 1:30 p.m. on weekends. Tickets are $20 for adults and $16 for students with a valid I.D.