Only six months after appearing in Rock of Ages at the Hobby Center, Constantine Maroulis is back in Houston. This time he's at the Alley Theatre playing Melvin Ferd the Third in the musical The Toxic Avenger.
"He's an earth scientist who hopes to rid New Jersey of all its pollution and toxic waste,” Maroulis told us in a break between rehearsals. “There's a corrupt mayor involved and some goons. They end up throwing him in a vat of toxic goo, and he becomes this seven-foot monster out for vengeance. He's in love with this beautiful and delicate librarian who happens to be blind." Maroulis describes the show as "a love story. It's a wonderful comedy, modern musical.”
One of the show's most difficult aspects is transforming Maroulis into the seven-foot monster for every performance. "I have one of the best special-effects guys in the business working on the show, incredible makeup and designers." As far as understanding his character goes, Maroulis said: "I am a bit of a tree-hugger and that's one of the names the mayor calls Melvin in the show. So I can definitely relate to the sort of inner geek. But underneath it all is this good person who really just wants to do good in the universe and just be in love."
The Alley cautions that the show is really designed for teens on up – not younger kids. As Maroulis puts it, with a laugh: "There's a great wholesome quality to this show, but done with a bit of blood and guts." 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 2:30 and 8 p.m. Saturdays, 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Sundays. Through February 12. 615 Texas. For information, call 713-220-5700 or visit www.alleytheatre.org. $25 to $95.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: Jan. 13. Continues through Feb. 12, 2012