It's 2008, the final days of the second Bush administration. John Ashcroft, the de facto (albeit behind-the-scenes) attorney general, is leaving politics to begin a second career—on Broadway! Confounding expectations, he's tapped Urinetown creators Greg Kotis (book/lyrics) and Mark Hollmann (music/lyrics) to pen his debut one-man show. EAT THE TASTE opens in a dingy motel somewhere on the outskirts of New York City. A pair of Homeland Security officers, working in tandem with an agent from the Justice Department, have been ordered to enlist a reluctant Mr. Kotis onto Mr. Ashcroft's creative team. Most of the officer's legal means of persuasion have been exhausted, but they'll give the bookwriter one last chance before making him "eat the taste." This trio of advocates is soon joined by the Broadway producer Matthew Rego, who has reasons of his own for wanting the project to move forward. Suffice it to say, a lot of money is at stake. Finally, the composer Mark Hollmann himself arrives, equipped with a portable keyboard and a rough draft for an opening number. And as Mark begins to play, Greg realizes that this musical offering may be one he can't refuse. Employing G-men, handcuffs and aspirin, EAT THE TASTE is the untold, unauthorized, behind-the-scenes story of the making of a musical that has yet to be made. (5M, 2W, flexible casting). Also includes the short play AN EXAMINATION OF THE WHOLE PLAYWRIGHT ACTOR RELATIONSHIP PRESENTED AS SOME KIND OF COP SHOW PARODY. A hilarious ten-page confection that will leave you doubled up in stitches as it brilliantly marries metatheatrical lunacy with police drama. (3M).
"Kotis has created that exceptionally rare thing: a genuinely funny farce that takes real creative chances, and a socially engaged farce with real political points to make…EAT THE TASTE succeeds for all the usual reasons—talent and craft." —National Public Radio. "On a sheer laughs-per-minute ratio, there's no funnier show in New York." —NY Post.