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Before “The Book of Mormon,” before “Team America: World Police,” and before “South Park,” the now-ubiquitous comedy team of Trey Parker and Matt Stone sent up a kind of test balloon for their brash style of humor with the cult hit “Cannibal the Musical.” The low-budget movie, made for about $125,000 in 1993, retells the folk legend of Alfred Packer, who led an ill-fated journey into the Colorado mountains in search of gold in 1873 and was later accused of cannibalizing his fellow travelers.

The musical has been on the radar of Drew McCabe, who co-founded the local company Theatre Jugend three years ago, when he was in college. His own film-to-stage adaptation of the musical, the rights for which took several years to arrange, opens in Buffalo East tonight and runs through March 30. “ ‘Cannibal the Musical’ is really the first musical I ever wanted to direct,” McCabe said. “Trey [Parker] and company loved this kind of folk legend about [Packer] and they decided to make a musical about it. It’s singing, dancing and eating people, essentially.” – Colin Dabkowski

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“Cannibal the Musical”When: 8 tonight through March 30. Where: Buffalo East, 1410 Main St. Tickets: $10 to $15. Info: 445-9432.