Musical of the Month: Nuncrackers

Our musical pick for December is the Theatre Factory’s production Nuncrackers: The Nunsense Christmas Musical.   Picking a holiday musical is often a challenge for community theatres. The selection needs to be something that isn’t another company’s holiday tradition, isn’t being produced by another theatre company in the area and has a degree of name recognition to help draw audiences to the theatre. Nuncrackers with its roots in the Nunsense series of musicals fits the bill quite nicely for the Theatre Factory and for us a little spoofy silliness is just what we need to get into the holiday spirit!

The show is the annual Christmas program put on at Mount Saint Helen’s. The Nunsense Christmas Musical takes place in real time in the basement of the convent. It is the first TV Special taped in the Cable Access TV Studio built by Reverend Mother with part of the prize money won earlier by Sister Mary Paul (aka Amnesia).

The show opens with the rousing “Christmas Time Is Nunsense Time” after which we are introduced to the cast and are given a brief update of what’s been happening in the past with everyone. Next up is an original ballet based on The Nutcracker featuring Sister Mary Leo as the Sugar Plum Fairy. Other numbers Father Virgil’s touching ballad “The Christmas Box.” Sister Amnesia sings her latest country hit, “Santa Ain’t Comin’ to Our House” followed by Reverend Mother’s song “An Old Time Carnival Christmas.”

Meanwhile, the cook, Sister Julia, Child of God, who was supposed to appear, doesn’t show up and so Father Virgil is forced to impersonate her demonstrating some Christmas cooking including instructions on making a fruitcake (the gift that lasts a lifetime!) However, there seems to be an abundance of rum in the recipe leaving Father Virgil quite soused.

Act Two continues the Nunsense as Sister Robert Anne sings her ‘big number’ “All I Want for Christmas” and Sister Hubert’s hand-clapping, foot-stomping, gospel song “It’s Better to Give Than to Receive.”

Nuncrackers is directed by Erin Stetor-Seaberg and features the comedic and vocal talents of Jeanne Kane as Sister Hubert, Angela Thompson as the Reverend Mother, Rona Gehring as Sister Robert Anne, and Kirstin Repco as Sister Amnesia with Jimmy Gaschler as Father Virgil.

This Nunsense Christmas Show will make your holiday season merry and bright! Start your Christmas cheer with Nuncrackers. Can’t you hear the belly laughs and feel your smile muscles aching?

Get your Christmas ham on with Nuncrackers starting December 7ththrough the 16that the Theatre Factory in Trafford.  Performances are Thursday through Saturday at 8:00 pm with Sunday Matinees at 2:00 pm. To reserve your seat call the Box Office at 412-374-09200 or email: theatrefactoryboxoffice@gmail.com for tickets.

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