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The cast consists of three human characters and eleven puppet characters who interact as if human, Sesame Street-style.
The puppets are animated and voiced by actor/puppeteers who are present, unconcealed, onstage but remain "invisible" relative to the storyline.
To assist in the illusion, the puppeteers wear plain gray clothing in contrast to the human characters' colorful costumes.
One puppeteer sometimes voices two or more puppets simultaneously.
Nicky, who is straight, suspects that Rod is gay, and assures Rod it is okay with him if he is; but Rod insists he is not ("If You Were Gay").
Princeton finds a lucky penny and longs to discover his purpose in life ("Purpose").
2003 Off-Broadway 2003 Broadway 2005 Las Vegas 2006 West End 2007 National Tour 2007 Stockholm 2007 Israel 2009 Australasian Tour 2009 2nd National Tour 2009 Off-Broadway 2009 Rio de Janeiro 2009 São Paulo 2010 Madrid 2010 Argentina 2011 UK Tour 2011 Denmark 2012 Paris 2012 Netherlands 2012 UK Tour 2013 Edinburgh 2013 Hong Kong 2013 Shanghai 2013 Mexico 2013 Vancouver 2013 Denmark 2014 Chicago 2014 Poland 2014 UK Tour 2015 UK Tour 2015 Australian Tour 2015 Fortaleza 2016 UK Tour 2016 Fortaleza 2017 Portugal Avenue Q is an American musical in two acts, conceived by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, who wrote the music and lyrics.
Brian, the café's MC, does his raunchy stand-up act ("I'm Not Wearing Underwear Today").
Marx interned at the program early in his career, and all four of the original cast's principal puppeteers—John Tartaglia, Stephanie D'Abruzzo, Jennifer Barnhart and Rick Lyon—were Sesame Street performers (D'Abruzzo returned to Sesame Street after leaving Avenue Q).
Three of the puppet characters are direct recognizable parodies of classic Sesame Street puppets: Roommates Rod and Nicky are a riff on Bert and Ernie, while Trekkie Monster bears the distinctive voice and disposition of Cookie Monster, though not his obsession with baked goods.
Conversely, the so-called "live-hands" puppets (see Puppets) require two puppeteers — again, in full view of the audience.
The show draws inspiration from and imitates the format of Sesame Street.
In addition, the show addresses adult themes that may be deemed inappropriate for younger children, such as racism, pornography, homosexuality and schadenfreude.