SALT LAKE CITY Ė A parent who was all shook up about Elvis Presley songs in a high school drama prompted educators to cancel the musical, deeming it too sexual. But the decision was reversed Thursday by administrators at the high school south of Salt Lake City.
The administrators at Herriman High School received permission from the copyright owners of ďAll Shook UpĒ to edit some of Presleyís songs and make scene changes in the American jukebox musical that borrows from William Shakespeare.
ďThe show will go on,Ē said Sandy Riesgraf, a spokeswoman for the Jordan School District. ďOur biggest concern early on, we wanted to make some changes to keep the play within community values. Itís a win-win for all of us.Ē
Presley warbles about a sweetheart whose ďlips are like a volcano thatís hotĒ in his song from 1957. ďIím proud to say sheís my buttercup. Iím in love. Iím all shook up.Ē
His song lyrics together with a scene suggesting cross-dressing were deemed offensive by a person the school is refusing to identify.
Some think school administrators folded too easily at the start.
ďIím at a loss,Ē Jill Fishback, whose daughter worked on the production, told The Salt Lake Tribune. ďTheyíre singing Elvis songs. A girl dresses up as a boy and kisses a boy. ... Itís not promoting homosexuality. It was supposed to be a farce.Ē
ďAll Shook UpĒ brings a modern twist to Shakespeareís ďTwelfth Night,Ē which portrays a female castaway who dresses as a boy to evade detection in ancient southern Europe, said Martine Green-Rogers, a theater fellow at the University of Utah.
ďThereís a misunderstanding about the plot of the play,Ē Green-Rogers said. ďIt happens a lot in theater. Artists push boundaries.Ē
The female castaway dresses as a boy as cover to wander about, but reveals herself as she falls in love with a young man.
ďBy that time, the genders have been righted,Ē Green-Rogers said. ďThe audience knows itís not a homosexual relationship.Ē
Rehearsals for ďAll Shook UpĒ had been briefly canceled. The production is back on for a February run.