NORTH CRAWFORD - The North Crawford Playhouse is in full swing, mounting the next grand production, the popular and much beloved comedy ‘Nunsense: The Mega Musical.’ Beware! There are only four shows this year: Thursday, Nov. 7; Friday Nov. 8;and two shows (including a matinee) on Saturday, Nov. 9. You don’t want to miss it!
This rollicking musical features songs, dancing (including some tap and ballet), an audience quiz and comic surprises. This show has become an international phenomenon with more than 5,000 productions worldwide, it has been translated in 21 languages because of its wide appeal.
The story begins when the Little Sisters of Hoboken discover that their cook, Sister Julia, Child of God, (Raeanna Aspenson) has accidentally poisoned some of the sisters, and they are in dire need of funds for the burials.
Mother Superior (Rachael Peterson) opens the show by greeting the audience and apologizing for their set constraints (Their middle school still has the set for ‘Grease’ up), and the nuns introduce themselves in the opening number explaining how they got where they are today, originally working in a leper colony near France.
After the song, Sister Amnesia (Katie Schellhorn) who lost her memory quizzes the audience on some of the information, handing out a few prizes.
Brother Leo (Marco Esparza) performs a dance interpretation of morning at the seminary, when he is reminded by mistress of novices and #2 in command Sister Mary Hubert (McKenna Johnson) about the importance of humility.
Sister Robert Anne, (Nevaeh Peralta-Roe) a streetwise nun from Brooklyn, pleads for a solo of her own. Mary Amnesia entertains all with a saucy puppet named Sister Mary Annette, and then informs Reverend Mother that the Jersey Board of Health has sent an inspector to the convent just that afternoon, which is a problem as four of the deceased nuns are still on ice in the deep freeze.
Reverend Mother, a former tightrope walker, tells the audience how she became a nun, but still somewhat misses performing.
Throughout the show, one of the main focuses is to help Sister Mary Amnesia regain her memory, when suddenly Sister Robert Anne rushes on stage to give Reverend Mother a bag that she seems troubled about, claiming she found it in one of the girls' bathrooms.
Reverend Mother dismisses the rest of the Sisters, and has a look in the bag and is overcome by its fumes, hilariously so. The rest of the Sisters notice, and put on a hastily thrown-together tap number to close the first act and get her off the stage.
Sister Robert Anne opens the second act; overjoyed at being able to finally take a starring role and sings a slow and heartfelt ballad about growing up Catholic.
The rest of the nuns rush on afterward, led by an especially distraught Reverend Mother, who has received a summons from the Board of Health that they’ve got to clean out the freezer by the next morning.
Featuring a silly ‘Dying Nun Ballet,’ and short cookbook sales cooking show segment interrupted by misprints and bad choices, the second act rolls along quickly.
With the help of Sister Mary Brendan (AJ Morga), Sister Mary Luke (Elissa Erikson), Sister Mary Wilhelm (Hannah Goodwin-Swiggum) and the rest of the nuns and novices, eventually Sister Amnesia regains her memory – she is Sister Mary Paul and was going to be a famous country singer, but chose the convent instead. She tells the rest of the sisters, who realize that Sister Mary Paul is also the name of the nun who just won the Publisher's Clearing House sweepstakes, and rejoice, thanking God for their good fortune.
North Crawford Playhouse Director Camille Smith wants the community to know that this musical is suitable for all ages.
“When this musical was first released, I had the great pleasure to attend a production with my parents, our parish priest as well as several of the nuns that I had at school,” Smith explained. “They loved the show, as did I. All of us have fond memories of growing up, of special people in our lives, of special teachers or community members. Music Director, Paul Cota, and I want to honor those people and those memories with this delightful show.”Don’t miss out! Call 735-4311 (ext 213) during regular school hours for tickets! Don’t forget! - Only four shows!