Bloodsong of Love

Bloodsong of Love is a romping, stomping good time, compliments of Joe Iconis and his gang of misfits. Billed as “The Rock ‘n’ Roll Spaghetti Western,” this new musical from local theatre mover-and-shaker and singer/songwriter Joe Iconis is playing at the intimate and versatile Ars Nova until May 9. Embrace the Bloodsong now, before it walks off into the sunset.

The story of Bloodsong centers on The Musician (so named because someone so passionate cannot be confined to a name – names are for accountants) and his quest to “find the bastard, get [his] woman back…” And what a fun and campy journey it is. The journey is narrated by Iconis regular Jason “SweetTooth” Williams, who is affable and has a natural voice and tons of charm to spare. Williams also pops up (as do most of the cast members) as ancillary characters here and there. Another Iconis regular along for the ride is Lance Rubin, whose goofy demeanor and lanky body help him strike gold as the lovable and hilarious tambourine playing sidekick, Banana. He is sidekick to The Musician, played here by the ruggedly handsome Eric William Morris. (I’m just going to take a moment here to acknowledge just how good that fella looks in tight jeans and a cowboy hat, with an acoustic guitar strapped across his back. Makes me want to hop in the DeLorean, accelerate to 88mph and head back to 1885.) Morris’s Musician is cocksure and determined, and Morris has a great, strong voice that commands your attention.

Rounding out the cast are MK Lawson (as Violetta, The Musician’s woman), Jeremy Morse (very funny as the Napoleon-complex-riddled villain Lo Cocodrilo) and Katrina Rose Dideriksen (as a variety of characters.) Dideriksen is a staple in Iconis’s jamborees but unfortunately, she’s underused here. She has a fantastic voice and great stage presence; at least when she did have some time to shine she sure shone brightly!

Here’s what I like best about the Iconis gang: Their sense of community and their zaniness remind me of the Muppets. The Iconis Players are a bunch of performers who love what they’re doing and who they’re doing it with; that passion comes across in the fun they have on stage – whether in a campy book musical like Bloodsong or in a Rock and Roll Jamboree – and they want you to have as much fun watching as they’re having performing. It’s a great synergy between the artists and the audience. Toward the end of The Muppet Movie, Kermit says, “I’ve got a dream, too. But it’s about singing and dancing and making people happy. That’s the kind of dream that gets better the more people you share it with.” Joe (and company), thanks for sharing your dream with us!

(Bonus: Stay tuned to for details on the release of the Things to Ruin cast recording.)

(Production stills taken from