Away from a Manger

Have Faith When Pandemonium Walks Up On the Scene


Oops! Here we go again. ‘Tis the season to be jolly. Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la. But I repeat myself.

Bluebarn Theatre unwraps it latest package, The Ultimate Christmas Show (abridged) brought to you from the workshop of those elves Reed Martin and Austin Tickenor of The Reduced Shakespeare Company.

What could be inside? Productions elsewhere featured a Confederate Christmas Carolers’ version of “White Christmas.” And, on another musical note: a take on “The Twelve Days of Christmas” begging for contributions from the audience. An introduction to another kind of faith: Utilitarian, i.e. believing in God when it’s useful. A chap with a severe case of Santa Claustrophobia. A potentially painful version of The Nutcracker. 

Rumor has it that this is not entirely a spectator event, that members of the audience may be called on stage to enact the Nativity. Which wise men, which virgins, which babes will take the risk?

Here are other hints of probabilities, “fractured puns, social irreverence, …keeping theatergoers alert and, at times, paranoid ….a fast-paced romp that’s rife with split-second costume and character changes.”  Reflections from The Theatre Mirror, (New England’s LIVE Theater Guide). Check proliferating quotes at http://www.reducedshakespeare.com/productions/the-ultimate-christmas-show-abridged/

On the premises: For the Annual Holiday Variety Show and Christmas Pageant at St. Everybody’s NonDenominational Universalist Church, which welcomes all faiths, believing in anything, none of the scheduled acts arrive, so three congregants are forced to become the show themselves.

Locally that means Noah Diaz, Bill Grennan and Jonathan Purcell. Randall T. Stevens is at the reins.

Ho, Ho, Ho. And a bottle of rum? Long johns? Anybody’s guess.

The Ultimate Christmas Show (abridged) runs Nov. 25-Dec.18 at Blue Barn Theatre, 1106 South 10th St.  Thurs.-Sat. 7:30 p.m., Sun. Nov. 27, Dec. 4, 11, 18:6 p.m., Weds. Dec. 7, 14: 7:30 p.m., Sun. Dec.4, 18, Sat. Dec. 17: 2 p.m.  Tickets: $25-$30. www.bluebarn.org


Category: Stage

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