Director’s Notes: For Purely Elfish Reasons
Over the years, many people have asked me how my odd sense of humor came to be. Of course, some of the credit/blame falls on my parents, but so much of it came from another source. On so many weekends, my sister and I would get our parents to take us to Blockbuster Video to rent VHS tapes of the Marx Brothers. Oh, the Marx Brothers… they only made sense when absolutely necessary, but you still could find layers in their humor. From the wit and verbal jabs of Groucho to the wisecracking foolishness of Chico and the sweet pantomime of Harpo, these brothers helped form my humor from a very early age.
In December of 2014, I went to the Alchemist Theatre to see a brand new, five-person show by my old friend Jason Powell. I hadn’t read anything in advance about this Elfish Reasons show, so I didn’t know what the show was about. Almost immediately, a performer came on stage dressed as a Christmas elf Groucho Marx! Then we got to see Jason himself as Chico! And look – Harpo too! I feel as if I owe an apology to anyone else that was in the theatre that night. I have never been a subtle laugher, and I worry I may have ruptured an eardrum or two with my uncontrollable guffaws.
This year, Christmas came early and I was tasked with bringing the new expanded version of this wonderful musical to the stage at Waukesha Civic Theatre. This has been a monumental task (as I’ve directed only one musical, and never a show with more than 14 people) but also a monumental joy. Working with this cast and this crew to bring purely silly holiday frivolity to the stage is a privilege I may never be able to match.
This is a sweet show. It is about caring and joy and love beyond the jokes and jibes. It is also about sitting back in a theatre and laughing with a whole room full of people. There are no great lessons from a ghost of Christmas future, but this show offers a chance to laugh and smile with those around you and those you love. For me, that is the true meaning of Christmas.
Thank you for coming, enjoy the show, and hail, hail Fredonia!
Posted on December 14, 2016, in Mainstage Performance and tagged 2016-2017, 60th season, Alison Schmidt, Allyson Kulinski, Billy Ray Olsen, Bryan Madson, Bryanna Madson, comedy, Dana Brzezinski, David Kaye, Director's Notes, Ella Madson, Ellyan Goeller, Elyse Lange, Emily Pietraszewski, Emily Schmidt, For Purely Elfish Reasons, Hayley San Fillippo, holiday, Ireland Anderson, Jessie Barr, Jim Donaldson, Jim Padovano, Jordyn Stewart, Joshua Parman, Keith Handy, Kelsey Monnot, Laura Tauzell, Lauren Heinen, Lesley Grider, Marx Brothers, Mary Brzozowski, Melissa Pol Loth, Mike Crowley, musical, Nathan Stepanski, Nicole Allee, Niki Czisz, Phil Stepanski, Rowan Grider, Ryan Stepanski, Scott Fudali, Yeng Thao. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Director’s Notes: For Purely Elfish Reasons.