It’s the fifth time around for A Very Nouveau Holiday, and what a glorious evening it will be. Pathos, absurdity, not-so-cuddly forest creatures, squabbling, romance and emotional dependency on modern technology. And that’s just in the lobby. Devoted to the idea that Christmas Shows needn’t be dull, derivative, repetitive, uninspired and sappy, A Very Nouveau Holiday was created to bring hilarious, beguiling, quirky, unorthodox and fresh viewpoints to the holidays and how we strive to honor caring and kindness in our hearts. At this point I should mention that I am one of the Eight Playwrights being featured, and while the following will certainly not be a puff piece neither will it be a review.
As we have come to expect from Nouveau 47 (at the Margo Jones Black Box at Fair Park) nothing is sacred, off-limits, traditional or precious. Plots explored include Say Cheese (family portrait takes contentious turn) PSA (Public Service Announcement with Abraham Lincoln, the Blessed Virgin and Santa) Langdon, The Seasonal Barista (grizzly bear hired at Starbucks) Gift of the Maggies (two inmates exchange gifts) Mr. Crispy (man who can’t stop re-living the worst decision of his life) Downeaster Alexa (our reliance on technology for emotional comfort) and Radio Flyer (despondent writer moonlights as Santa).
Playwrights from all over (some as far as Neptune) submitted their short plays, and for the modest price of a ticket, you can partake of these excursions into the unknown realm of Christmas contemplation. A splendid, nimble, outrageously talented gang of actors has been cast and recast and cross-cast in eight different shows, thoroughly testing their wicked-mad skills as performers. Fret not, as a carefully chosen regimen of calisthenics, fierce indoctrination and controlled substances has been applied to guarantee a flawless (if somewhat frantic) result. In all seriousness, each piece brings its own unique angle on the holiday season, surely a time that is fraught with stress, expectations, delight, dread, chaos and sorrow. We sincerely believe you will be amused, engaged, overwhelmed, challenged and comforted. “Oh, the places you’ll go.”
The Actors: Monalisa Amidar, JR Bradford, Cameron Casey, Emily Faith, Robert Long, Chris Messersmith, Charles Themayor Ratcliff, and Jerome Stein.
The Directors: Andra Hunter, Becki McDonald, Brad McEntire, David Meglino.
The Playwrights: Franky Gonzalez, Allison Hibbs, Jonathan Kravetz, Jim Kuenzer, Brad McEntire, Ben Schroth, Greg Silva, and Christopher Stephen Soden.
Nouveau 47 (at the Margo Jones Black Box at Fair Park) presents: A Very Nouveau Holiday 2017, playing December 8th-23rd, 2017. Mondays, Fridays, and Sundays: 8:15. Saturdays 2-6PM. 1121 1st Ave, Dallas, Texas 75210. www.margojonestheatre.org. https://nouveauholiday.brownpapertickets.com/