Hoping to realize at least one of the handful of things one can do with a monkey, a man in New Orleans is staging a live recreation of Dunston Checks In—the searing 1996 drama in which an orangutan rebels against the life of crime that’s been thrust upon him, choosing instead to go straight with the legitimate business of annoying Jason Alexander. “I’ve recently acquired a monkey through means that I shall not disclose; however, it has given me the opportunity to act out a childhood fantasy,” writes the unnamed poster on Craigslist. He then continues in the best way someone posting on Craigslist about sketchily obtained monkeys and his “fantasies” possibly can: “Of course you know what I’m referring to, Dunstin [sic] Checks In.”
The man’s spelling of “Dunston” may be corrupted, but his intentions are pure. “Charles, my monkey will of course play Dunstin [sic], I will play Kyle Grant, and all other parts are open,” he says, before redundantly adding, “Please only serious inquiries.”
For those interested in playing any of those parts—such as Alexander’s flustered hotel manager, Paul Reubens’ ruthless animal control officer Buck LaFarge, Rupert Everett’s jewel thief Lord Rutledge, or Faye Dunaway’s hotel owner Mrs. Dubrow—you’ll not only need to commit to the Oct. 2 performance in City Park (“That date is firm”), but also to three rehearsals. These will ensure this reenactment starring some people from Craigslist and a possibly illegal monkey is worthy of the legacy of Dunston Checks In.
Also, you might need to commit to potentially getting bit by a monkey: “[Charles] has socialization issues, and it’s tough bringing him around strangers,” the poster warns at the very end. Still, “he has a kind heart” —and besides, such are the risks inherent in the theater.