“NUNSENSE” OFF ON A MERRY ROMP IN BERLIN

BONNIE GOLDBERG
    

Those engaging Little Sisters of Hoboken are on the move again, thanks to playwright Dan Goggin, and they are kicking up their sturdy heels weekends until Saturday, October 22 at the Connecticut Cabaret Theatre in Berlin. Dressed in their black and white simplicity, Mother Superior Mary Regina and her favorite quartet of sisters want to entertain you and they are willing to pull out all the stops to showcase their talents.

In “Nunsense,” the good sisters have to solve a sticky problem: how to bury the last four nuns, victims originally numbering 52, who were accidentally poisoned by Sister Julia, Child of God, in a bad soup incident. When the sisters ran out of burial fees, they stuck the last four nuns in the freezer and now the New Jersey Board of Health is on the way for an inspection.

What can the Little Sisters do, after they panic, but put on a fundraising party, a variety show, to raise the much needed funds.

To that end, Mother Superior (Lousie DeChesser), who once was a tight rope walker in the circus, is calling upon all her theatrical skills. She is mobilizing the talents of the Sister Mary Hubert (Joanne Callahan-Rhoor), the second-in-command who oversees the novices, to “Tackle That Temptation with a Time Step.” For the budding ballerina Sister Mary Leo (Jessica DeMaio) who dedicates the dance to God, it’s the sweet and sentimental thoughts conjured up with “Lilacs Bring Back Memories.”

For Sister Amnesia (Lola Elliott Hugh), who lost her memory when a crucifix fell on her head, it’s using her best friend, the puppet, Sister Marionette, and giving a lesson on joining the convent for the trio of benefits: poverty, chastity and obedience. Last, but not forgotten, is Sister Robert Anne (Kristin Ceneviva) who grew up as a troubled kid in Brooklyn and is the perpetual understudy for the cast. Until, that is, an accident sidelines the Reverend Mother and Sister Robert Anne gets to belt out “I Just Want to Be a Star.”

Between the religious quizzes, the cooking lessons from the B.V.M. (Blessed Virgin Mary), the country singing sessions, a quick trip to the drive-in movie, the show under the fine direction of Kris McMurray, will prove that “Nunsense is (delightfully) Habit Forming.”

For tickets ($30), call the CT Cabaret, 31=33 Webster Square Road, Berlin, exit 22 off route 9, at 860-829-1248  or online at www.ctcabaret.com. Performances are Friday and Saturday nights at 8 p.m., but come early, doors open at 7:15 p.m., and bring snacks to share at your table. Desserts and drinks are also available for purchase on site.

This will appear inthe Middletown Press on May 14.

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