Friday April 18, 2014

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Nunsense set to bring laughs to the WMCA

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Submitted photo

Ramey Praznik, who is playing Sister Amnesia, poses with Sister Mary Annette during a rehearsal at the Mecca studio.

By Chris Tataryn Journal/Brandon

Nunsense is yet another musical comedy being produced by Mecca, set to open on March 8. “Nunsense if the first musical piece in a series of about eight created by Dan Goggin,” said Lisa Vasconcelos, cast member and program director at Mecca. “He started a greeting card line that became so successful he was encouraged to explore the characters in his cards. So he ended up writing the Nunsense series all by himself, and they are really quite funny.” The story features a convent of nuns that just lost a few members thanks to a bad batch of soup prepared by Convent Chef Sister Julia. 52 sisters ended up meeting their maker thanks to the foul food, and the convent only had enough money to bury 48 of them, so the survivors are holding a fundraising concert to pay for the burial of the last four. “Nunsense is an all-woman show with humour much along the lines of Spamalot,” said Vasconcelos. “It’s very farcical; there are a lot of play-on-words and silly jokes.” Originally the show was only written to have five characters, but Mecca has expanded it to include a chorus and a few extra characters including Sister Amnesia, a nun without memory of who she is, Sister Leo, who aspires to be the first convent ballerina, and Sister Robert-Anne, who is not talented enough to have a number in the fundraising talent show. “The women in the show all have an excellent relationship,” said Vasconcelos. “It translates wonderfully onto the stage as the relationship between the characters.” Nunsense was first performed in Brandon about 20 years ago at Brandon University, and a decade ago Theatre 85 did a Christmas show in the Wheat City. “This is the first time in 10 years the Sister of Hoboken have made an appearance in Brandon,” said Vasconcelos. “If this goes well, we may just do more of the shows in the series.” The show features music relating to what audiences heard in Joseph and the Technicolour Dream Coat, including country western styles, gospel pieces, and various other song styles. “The biggest challenge in this show is the dancing component,” laughed Vasconcelos. “Most of us are not trained dancers, and for this show we had to learn a tap-dancing section. It has not been easy to get the hang of.” The show is being held at the WMCA from March 8-10. Check the WCMA box office for details or to secure your tickets.


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