Nunsense

“I always had a good experience with nuns,” said Dan Coggins, who wrote the book, music and lyrics we all know as Nunsense to show us what nuns are “really like.” He clearly had some exceptional times with his nuns and now you have your chance to have a “good experience” with them too.

This is probably the biggest load of nonsense you’ve ever seen but this utter nonsense makes Nunsense and it’s jolly good fun.

If ever there was ever a contrived excuse for creating a musical romp, Nunsense is it. The little Sisters of Hoboken recently suffered a food poisoning incident at the convent in which fifty-two of them died. Unfortunately, they were only able to bury forty-eight of them before their funds ran out. Abandoning more traditional forms of ecclesiastical fund-raising, they decided to put on a song and dance extravaganza at the local arts centre. No more story is needed, only lights and action.

Sarah Jane Vincent as Sister Mary Regina, the Reverend Mother, exercises a commanding presence throughout. Her Irish accent perfectly enhances her impish naughtiness which climaxes in her hysterical encounter with a bottle of brand-name stimulant aroma, more commonly found at gay discos and used in intimate bedroom encounters. I’m not sure all the audience quite grasped the full outrageousness of this but they soon warmed to it. Novices might want to research before the show.

Emma Dixon as Sister Amnesia plays an endearing role. She effortlessly handles the audience quiz about the history of the convent and seizes the opportunity for ad lib interaction with the audience. Pay close attention, novices, to what you are told up to this point if you want to succeed. She also knows how to gain our sympathies in her soulful singing and delights us with puppetry skills.

Melanie Dunn as Sister Robert Anne successfully plays on our heart-strings as the frustrated understudy who just wants a proper role of her own. Her powerful top register alone should give her that while Livvy Carr, as Sister Mary Leo, delights us with her dancing.

Lisa Rose Mitchell as Sister Mary Hubert, has oversight of the novices. Her role requires her to be somewhat more constrained than some of the others but that doesn’t stop her displaying a fine array of singing and dancing talent. Backing up the sisters is the musical director, Jade Brightwell, for whom there is no let-up on the keyboard in this unrelentingly fast-moving show.

This is probably the biggest load of nonsense you’ve ever seen but this utter nonsense makes Nunsense and it’s jolly good fun.

Reviews by Richard Beck

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Performances

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The Blurb

The little Sisters of Hoboken shock the Pope by putting on a show to raise money to bury their Sisters after 52 die in tragic accident. Your help is needed... A food poisoning incident at the convent killed 52 of the Sisters, but they've only been given enough money to bury 48 of them! They have to raise the rest. So, for the first time ever, the little Sisters of Hoboken are putting on an all-singing, all-dancing show like you've never seen before! Please answer their prayers - get your tickets to their toe-tapping, hand-clapping extravaganza! Unmissable!

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