HILO — With recreational marijuana still not legalized in Hawaii yet, the most fun to be had legally on April 20 might instead be a weed-themed stage play called “The Marijuana-Logues.”
The show, produced by the Hilo Community Players, is a three-woman comedy about the various absurdities of weed culture and will be held on the informal pot holiday Saturday, April 20, or 420 Day, at the Crown Room of the Grand Naniloa Resort.
Director and actress Justine Thompson said the play stood out to her because of a combination of its subject matter and the pedigree of its original creators; one of its creators was comedian Doug Benson, while its first tour briefly featured Tommy Chong of Cheech &Chong fame.
“I thought it was a funny premise and it’s a shame it’s never been done here before,” Thompson said.
While the title of the show, as well as its format, is a riff on Eve Ensler’s long-running feminist play “The Vagina Monologues,” the “marijuana-logues” are thoroughly lighter in tone, avoiding that play’s often dark subject material in favor of lighthearted weed-based humor.
For instance, one of the monologues, delivered by Thompson, discusses a trip to Disneyland — called “The Unhappiest Place on Earth” — where a stoned visitor insults other guests in the parking lot.
While the original play included 30 monologues, Thompson said not all of them will be performed, largely because some of them are “hopelessly out of date,” while some original material will also be included at the play’s introduction.
Thompson said she has hoped to stage a production of “The Marijuana-Logues” for about two years. She was college classmates with her fellow actresses, Angela Nakamura and Bria Callaway, and she jumped at the chance to return to stage with them after the Hilo Community Players suggested it.
“And it’s fun to be at the Grand Naniloa,” Thompson said. “My father used to do dinner theater in the Crown Room himself, so it’s cool to be performing there.”
Although the performance will take place on 4/20, a day commonly celebrated by vigorous cannabis consumption, Thompson said the play is not dependent on mood altering substances to be funny.
“We want it to be a fun night out for sober people, too,” she said, adding that people should not feel pressured into smoking in order to have a good time.
Despite that statement, Thompson neither endorsed nor cautioned against preparing for the show by puffing on that loud beforehand.
“I mean, we’re doing it on 4/20, we’re not trying to be subtle about it,” Thompson said, although she added that the Grand Naniloa does have a no-smoking policy and also that weed is illegal without a medical cannabis card.
Performances for the show will take place 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets begin at $25 per person and can be purchased at www.hiloplayers.org or at Irie Hawaii Smoke and Vape Shop in Hilo.