TheatreWorks New Milford offers a delightfully naughty holiday show
TheatreWorks, New Milford: You better watch out because “Wreck the Halls: A Musical Slay Ride” is strictly an adults only show that features explicit language, sexually suggestive lyrics and more fun than you can expect to fit into Santa’s sack. If you tend to be offended by this type of humor, then you are forewarned. Otherwise, have a ball at New Milford’s clever holiday show. Bradford Blake is known for being ingenious and it shows in this production, which he not only wrote the music and lyrics for, but who also directed, choreographed, and provided the scenic design for the production. All of it is hilariously inventive and unique. There’s not a holiday tradition missing from this two act musical tribute and each holiday is properly poked fun at.
The talented six-member cast never fails to have the audience laughing as they take a trip as first grade children to “Give Thanks for Grandma’s House” or as adults hoping for “A Merry Christmas Divorce” or going for a “Slay Ride” to end all sleigh rides. While it’s impossible to think that the show can maintain this level of laugh-out-loud lyrics, along comes “Someone Spiked the Eggnog.” That it is spiked with Viagra is enough to suggest the comedy that follows.
Bret Bisaillon helps to deconstruct this holiday funfare in style. When he enters the stage as a shepherd with sheep attached, it’s hard not to laugh as he sings out “I Don’t Wanna Be A Shepherd No More.” Diana Matson is a powerhouse vocalist and really belts it out when it comes to describing what it’s really like being a treetop angel. Oh, the pain she endures. Priscilla Squiers, a popular area vocalist brings waves of laughter as she proclaims she’s the one who put “The Spice in the Gingerbread Man,” and when she tells the tale of “Mister and Missus Snowman,” she’ll melt your heart till tears of laughter trickle down.
Austin Tewksbury is too funny. He’s also so talented as he parades around in onesie-style pajamas waiting for Santa to come, but he brings down the house when he describes how all the colors of the holidays are gone when his lover left him - all but the color blue. Cary Van Hollen is wickedly talented and you see that in all her numbers and most especially in “That Yule Log.” Rounding off this sextet is Alexis Maximus Vournazos who has the audience howling when he steps onstage as the “Nutcracker” and sings out “The Nutcracker’s Lament.”
The giant wreath on the stage wall is lit and hints at the band just behind the semi-translucent fabric that fills the wreath’s center. Music director Charles Smith and the band hit every note and exotic sound on cue. Tom Libonate’s voiceover repeatedly wins the audience’s attention with his seriously delivered ridiculous instructions. Mary Kimball is a seamstress with serious skill seen in the outfits these characters wear. The accessories consist of everything from gold and silver sparkling Santa hats to reindeer antlers, green gloves, colorful aprons, and so much more. There’s even a scene with puppets which is simply a riot.
If you’re looking to de-stress during the holiday season, this is the show to see. It plays through Dec. 28. Box office: 860-350-6863.
Joanne Greco Rochman is an active member in the American Theatre Critics Association. She welcomes comments. Contact: email@example.com.