First indoor musical since lockdown comes to Curtain Call

Curtain Call/contributed

Hallelujah, the nuns are coming! Now, more than a year after Nunsense should have played at Curtain Call, this laugh-filled tuner about a group of nuns raising money to bury their dead sisters, is finally able to open in The Kweskin Theatre, Stamford, on June 3.

Unapologetically silly as ever, and strewn with groaners and bad puns (“St. Francis was a sissy”), this satire about a quintet of nuns from Hoboken putting on a fundraising talent show in a high school gym is the kind of send-up only someone heavily steeped in Catholicism could dream up. Winner of Outer Critics’ Circle awards for best musical, best book, and best music, Nunsense offers a convent full of hilarity for the whole family, proving once and for all that nun rhymes with fun. You don’t have to be Catholic to roar with laughter at the hilarious antics of the Little Sisters of Hoboken, New Jersey. Viewers of all faiths, however, will find the laughs come with little penance to be paid in this wonderful show penned by Dan Goggin.

Mr. Goggin writes, “I wrote Nunsense because I wanted to share what I knew to be “the humor of the nun.” He certainly accomplishes this with the lyrics in such songs as “Nunsense is Habit-Forming,” “The Biggest Ain’t the Best,” “We’ve Got to Clean Out the Freezer,” and “Holier Than Thou.” Through song, dance, and every Catholic joke we have ever heard, Nunsense is a great entertainment. “I spent a great deal of my life around nuns, and most of my experiences left wonderful memories. Though it may be hard to believe, each of the Little Sisters of Hoboken is based on a real-life nun,” Goggin added.

“Nunsense is truly habit-forming and one hell of a good time,” says Curtain Call executive director Lou Ursone. The show has been so well-received that this is the third time Curtain Call has presented the show – the last time was in 2009. “Patrons ask about this show often, so I’m thrilled to bring it back,” Ursone said. A graduate of nun-run Catholic schooling, Ursone said this show brings back lots of great memories for him and his family members.

“As soon as we started rehearsing, the girls jelled brilliantly and have been having a blast,” Ursone added. While the show is one of the most-produced musicals ever, this current version features some new twists, which author Goggin has approved and thought “hilarious!” “It’s no wonder this show has become an international phenomenon, boasting more than 5,000 productions worldwide in over 21 different languages!” Ursone said. The original production ran in New York for over five years and is second only to The Fantasticks in off-Broadway tenure.

“I can’t believe this is the first indoor musical production we’ve had since early in 2020, but it feels so good,” Ursone said. The cast and crew have all been full vaccinated and are very anxious and excited to finally get to perform.

Ann Alford and Marilyn Crough Olsen as Reverend Mother Regina and Sister Hubert, respectively (photo: Curtain Call/contributed)

Nunsense, directed by Gail Yudain with choreography by Kelly Nayden and with music direction by Ben McCormack, will play in The Kweskin Theatre for three weekends. Set design is by Peter Barbieri, Jr., costumes by Megan Morello and lighting design by Peter Petrino.

The cast includes Ann Alford as Reverend Mother, Regina, Sara DeFelice as Sister Robert Ann, Jenny Maso as Sister Leo, Marilyn Crough Olsen as Sister Hubert and Jennifer Silverman as Sister Amnesia.

Since tickets went on sale several months ago, social distancing and masking for the audience will be required throughout the run of Nunsense. Ursone explained, “Hundreds of patrons purchased tickets expecting certain protocols to be in place, so eliminating them would be like a proverbial bait and switch.” Enhanced air flow will also be maintained and hand sanitizer will be available.

Nunsense is sponsored by the Britta & Denis J. Nayden Charitable Foundation, LTD and will play in The Kweskin Theatre June 3 through 19, Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings at 8PM and Sunday afternoons at 2PM. Tickets are available through the Curtain Call Box Office at 203-461-6358 or online at Tickets are $35 for adults, $25 for Senior Citizens and $20 for children under 21.

Curtain Call is the non-profit community-based theatre company in residence at The Sterling Farms Theatre Complex, 1349 Newfield Avenue in Stamford. Year-round productions and workshops are presented by and for area residents in The Kweskin Theatre and The Dressing Room Theatre. Curtain Call received The Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts as well as the ACE AWARD for Artistic Excellence from the Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County and has been voted BEST LOCAL THEATRE GROUP 10 years running in the Annual Readers’ Poll of The Fairfield County Weekly and BEST PERFORMING ARTS GROUP by StamfordPlus magazine for 13 years.

All programming is presented in cooperation with the City of Stamford with additional support from the CT Office of the Arts.

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