• Broadway Beat

Duolingo Adds New Language: Theatre Troupe's Hilarious Inside Jokes

by Caitlin Bitzegaio. @caitorade.

Manchester, NH - Language learning app Duolingo is officially adding a new language: local theatre troupe’s hilarious inside jokes.


“That’s the plot, Mack!” repeated newbie troupe member Betsy Gregor, who recently received a degree in musical theater and joined the cast when she was rejected from several area theme parks. “I kept hearing them say that phrase and wondered what it meant. I guess it just means 'you’re right', which would be easier to say and, honestly, just as funny. I’m desperately hoping to move to New York before I learn to speak fluently.”


For years, outsiders have struggled to communicate with the Bedrock Players, who perform plays and musicals in the Manchester metro area. It’s not only new actors who are learning the troupe’s hilarious jokes, but community members at large, who have been subjected to the punchlines for years without ever being included or even considered.


“I was always curious why the troupe called U.S. Dollars 'pattys,” said Josh Karlin, who owns the Back Home Coffee Shop where the Bedrock Players play board games and rarely buy coffee. “So I downloaded the app. You know, I always thought it might be a reference to Patti LuPone, but I learned from Duolingo that they spell it with a Y. So now I’m more at a loss than ever.”


Veteran troupe member Layla Petra, who has not spoken a word of modern English since two years into her BFA program, is excited to welcome new speakers to fold.


“That’s gas pal! You’re my Dolly now!” said Petra, which Gregor said she thinks roughly translates to “Welcome to the troupe. Newbies don’t get leads.”


At press time, Duolingo declined to disclose how many language learners were interested in the Bedrock Players’ hilarious inside jokes, but representative Jamal Franks said Duolingo promotes the preservation of languages for historical purposes.


“The language might actually be very annoying, as is the case here, but it’s possible future generations might want to study how local theatre troupes communicated. I agree, it seems unlikely.”