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Nunsense
a Musical Comedy
CATEGORY : COMEDY MUSICAL
by Dan Goggin

COMPANY : Marietta Theatre Company [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Theatre In The Square:Alley Stage [WEBSITE]
ID# 5321

SHOWING : August 17, 2018 - September 01, 2018

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

Five of the 19 surviving Little Sisters of Hoboken, a one-time missionary order that ran a leper colony on an island south of France, discover that their cook, Sister Julia, Child of God, accidentally killed the other fifty-two residents of the convent with her tainted vichyssoise while they were off playing bingo with a group of Maryknolls. However they forgot about four of the nuns and need additional funds for a proper burial! With the deceased nuns on ice in the deep freeze, they decide to stage a variety show in the Mount Saint Helen’s School auditorium to raise the necessary amount.


CAST & CREW LIST
Director Stephanie Earle
Choreographer Zach Phelps
Sister Mary Hubert Hannah Marie Craton
Sister Mary Amnesia Sophie Decker
Reverend Mother Mary Regina Kelsey South
Sister Mary Leo Megan Wartell
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REVIEWS

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Tried and True
by playgoer
Sunday, August 19, 2018
3.5
True, "Nunsense" is supposed to be played on a set created for a school production of "Grease," but the set designed by Will Brooks for Marietta Theatre Company is crude even by middle school standards. Add in uneven lighting designed by Brad Rudy that has the actors moving in and out of shadows, if not playing completely in penumbral shade, and you have a production that isn’t terribly appealing to the sense of sight. Even Caroline Marshbanks’ perfectly fine-looking nun costumes seem to have wimple-veil connection issues that have the nuns frequently checking the tops of their heads. Low marks so far.

The musicality under Shane Simmons’ musical direction, the choreography by Zac Phelps, and the well-balanced sound design by L. Gamble start to redeem things. Add in good performances all around and "Nunsense" starts to become a pleasure. Layer in absolutely fabulous audience interaction that elevates ad libs to become the highlights of the show, and you have a pretty terrific production all ’round.

Stephanie Earle has directed five youngish women to create a cohesive ensemble. Rosy-cheeked Kelsey South as the Reverend Mother and fresh-faced Hannah Marie Craton as second-in-command Sister Mary Hubert seem no older than the others, which lessens their authority somewhat, but they do well enough. Megan Wartell excels in her solo dances (although the venue doesn’t allow viewing of feet for people beyond the front rows), and Kate Metroka shines in her solo number, as well as adding a New Joisey accent to the proceedings. Sophia Decker is absolutely wonderful as Sister Mary Amnesia, combining a great legit voice with rubber-faced comedic chops that sometimes border on mugging, but which always delight.

Ms. Earle and Mr. Phelps have done a pretty good job of ensuring that the side audiences get their share of faces. They certainly get more than their share of attention during audience interaction (which begins shortly before the show proper commences). The closer you sit to the action, the more you are likely to enjoy this production. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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