Disclaimer: SPANK! is not associated with, nor authorized by, author E.L. James or Vintage Press. It is for mature audiences.
In 2011, E.L. James’s best-selling book “Fifty Shades of Grey” left women all around the world swooning.
Now, thanks to Mills Entertainment, “Fifty Shades of Grey” has been brought to life with a whole new twist in SPANK!: The Fifty Shades Parody.
The show’s tour kicked off in October of last year and has since been booked in over 150 cities across the nation and has grossed $10 million at the box office.
“It’s been a massive, massive success, to say the least,” said Joanna Brumley, Marketing and Publicity coordinator for Mills Entertainment. “Our shows are outselling Lady Gaga in some cases.”
Mills Entertainment was founded 13 years ago by Michael Mills. The company is a leading producer and promoter for live entertainment. They have produced live tours for several well-known television stars including Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer, and Buddy Valastro, the Cake Boss.
SPANK! is the company’s first original theatrical production.
“The idea came about as a result of the popularity, of course, of Fifty Shades of Grey,” Brumley said. “We thought this is the perfect type of story that would be so much fun to bring to life on the stage.”
Representatives from Mills Entertainment claim that the show was a hit from the start.
“It’s a hilarious, hilarious show,” Brumley said. “I’ve seen it myself five times and I still laugh, even though I know all the jokes.”
If you haven’t had the chance to read the books, there is no reason to fret. Amanda Barker, who plays one of the narrators, “E.B. Janet”, said, “Even if you didn’t read the books, it’s still a fun night for women to go out and drink with their girlfriends and see a guy take his shirt off and have a lot of laughs.”
Barker is an improviser and a sketch comedian as well as a classically-trained theater actress. She began working with Mills Entertainment a little over a year ago.
“I hope to have a long future with Mills Entertainment,” Barker said. “There are other shows in development that, unfortunately, I can’t speak of right now, but we have been looking at other parodies and TV shows.”
Though this is Barker’s first show with the company she has loved the experience.
“We have hit some beautiful cities and some wonderful small towns that I wouldn’t have seen otherwise and pretty much everything in between,” Barker said. “We’ve been able to tailor the show to the environments we find ourselves in, which is one of the best things about doing this show.”
As the narrator, Barker heads a lot of audience interaction.
“We’ve been pretty much everywhere, and my job is to talk to the women of the audience,” Barker said. “That’s what I really, truly love best about the show … We make it really personable.”
With each performance there are pre-show cocktails and a post-show meet and greet with the cast.
“I have a bunch of women now following me on Twitter and Facebook and I feel like I have created strong friendships and bonds with women across the country,” Barker said. “As cheesy as that may sound, it’s true.”
The show will be in Fort Collins on Saturday Oct. 26 and Sunday Oct. 27 at the Lincoln Center. Tickets range from $35-$45 and both shows begin at 8 p.m.
Senior Entertainment Reporter Peyton Garcia can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.