Santa Claus will definitely put the cast and crew of Waukesha Civic Theatre's new holiday production CANDY CANE TALES AND HOLIDAY CAROLS on the "Nice" list this year. From the moment the fun filled evening begins, you can't help but be overtaken by the holiday spirit. The production follows the story line of a young girl and her parents as they prepare for the holiday season. As the story moves forward, the inquisitive young girls asks questions about many of the holiday traditions, where they came from, and why we celebrate them. Her parents, aided by the rest of the company, help explain and further illustrate the answers through story, song, and dance.
The production takes on many favorite holiday stories including "Frosty the Snowman", "How the Grinch Stole Christmas", "The Year Without Santa Claus", and "Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus". Songs range from classics such as "White Christmas", "Carol of the Bells" and "Silent Night" to story based songs like "You're a Mean One Mister Grinch", "Heat Miser" and "Snow Miser". The production also contains a fantastic Christmas Around the World medley, including "Feliz Navidad", "Mele Kalikimaka" and "O Tannenbaum". Rounding out the show are some parodies and more humorous holiday songs, including "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer" and "The Twelve Pains of Christmas".
Though there were some noticeable flubs in lines and song lyrics during opening night, the Waukesha Civic Theatre's production will bring a smile to the face of even the biggest Scrooge you can find. The cast has great chemistry, move well together on stage, and project a positive, joyful energy throughout the theater. The writing, music, and choreography helped convey a joyous atmosphere that was infectious.
Among the many highlights of the night is the telling of the "How the Grinch Stole Christmas". Many of the cast members partake in the telling of the story, each taking telling bits of the story. When we finally meet the Grinch (played by Isaiah Reynolds), we are greeted by a creepy, campy, hilarious version of the Grinch that brings the house down. Other highlights included amazing performances by Mark Cage as the Snow Miser and Jeff Barta as the Heat Miser. These two actors brought back great childhood memories of these characters by their great attention to detail and character.
Over all, this is a fun, family friendly show that can be enjoyed by one and all. If the hustle and bustle of the holiday season is already bringing you down, take a few hours and visit the Waukesha Civic Theatre for this production. Your holiday spirit will be renewed.
CANDY CANE TALES AND HOLIDAY CAROLS runs weekends through December 16th. Tickets can be purchased online at the Waukesha Civic Theatre Web Site or by calling the box office at (262) 547-0708.
photo: Waukesha Civic Theatre