My Movies Houstonians Love Inspiration: “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” February 24, 2016

When I was honored with the offer to host a favorite comedy for Movies Houstonians Love, my first choice was Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Online, Hedwig is commonly described with the tags “transsexual,” “queer,” and “rock musical.” In 2001, I went to see it at River Oaks Theatre, expecting a modern take on The Rocky Horror Picture Show and hoping for a brief distraction from my day job and publishers’ rejection letters.

What I found onscreen, however, was a story about a scathingly witty person overcoming cruel tragedies to achieve her artistic dream. Hedwig made me laugh until I cried. She made me cry until my shirt was stained with eye makeup. In the end, she made me sigh, rise, and leave the theater with renewed ambition, which resulted in my first book being published.

Or maybe it didn’t happen exactly like that. But Hedwig was definitely an inspiration to me as an artist, a woman, and a karaoke enthusiast.

To those who think they don’t like musicals, I would advise that Hedwig’s lyrics surpass the moon, June, spoon, and Oklahoma of typical Broadway ditties. Her every verse is an Easter egg for the learned. She incorporates clever references to Greek philosophy, Egyptian mythology, and the Old Testament.

To those who like musicals, I’d say you’re going to love this one. The songs are catchy and beg to be sung aloud later in your car, your shower, or unmanned elevators.

To those who’ve already seen this movie, I say I can’t wait to see it on the big screen again, this time with you.

On Monday, March 7, join Gwendolyn Zepeda as she introduces “Hedwig and the Angry Inch.”