See it if you want to see a work in progress, an ultimately touching musical that examines what it was like to be gay in New York before AIDS and after.
Don't see it if you've no interest in gay baths, New York in the 70's or remembering the first ignored wave of young men that died in their prime from AIDS.
We've come a long way since an image of men in towels could instantly conjure the Baths or the amount of free, easy and sometimes even spiritual, guilt-free sex available in New York in the 70's, both gay and straight.
It's a history quickly receding from memory, especially in this confused, bare-it-all era of look but don't touch, and perhaps the most forgotten & unthought of are the thousands that died mysteriously in the first wave of what was then an unnamed disease.
It's an important story to tell, & Mr Alasá deserves credit for the attempt in this autobiographical work in progress which he has written, directed and narrates. The cast & songs evoke the era well, and though the characters and script often border on stereotype from our post Will & Grace vantage, the truth is that reality then was often like those stereotypes, played out in a newly liberated expression.
A simple, stripped down set serves both to evoke a room at the Continental Baths, where much of the action takes place, as well as to display a black and white documentary of New York in the 1970's in all its grungy, frightening glory, as well as a short grainy clip of one of Bette Midler's appearances at the Baths.
Problems in pace, structure & length might be addressed by a more objective co-director to help focus and tighten things. We, as an audience, are less and less sure of where and who we are as the evening progresses, and though Mr. Alasá does introduce himself at curtain, it's not quite clear that he is, in fact, more than just our Narrator.
An interesting project, Men in Towels should have the chance to develop and find its voice.