ArtsReviewTheatre

Sex and Santa prove a hot, bawdy and hilarious mix with Forte Musical’s festive Naughty … But Nice: Six In the City

Caroline Russell-King offers her Postcard Review of the latest Naughty … But Nice musical Six In the City.

Show: Naughty … But Nice: Six in the City.

Playwrights/lyricists/composers: Joe Slabe, et al.

Production company/theatre space: Forte Musical Theatre Guild at Lunchbox Theatre.

Length: One act (One hour 20 mins., no intermission).

Genre(s): Musical revue.

Premise: The adult Christmas show comprises mostly comedy songs on antithetical and seasonal tropes. 

Why this play? Why now?: This Slabe/Thibodeau formula is a winning Calgary tradition.

Curiosities: Given the bevy of drinking women I wondered if among their giggly, snap chatty enthusiasm they too were waiting for Mr. Big jokes or a Sex and the City homage song, since they could have been mistaken for Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte.  

Notable moment: Tenaj gets the audience all hot when he stokes his fire. Priceless.

Notable writing: This year the monologues were cut and the pretence of a plot dropped in favour of a straight-up menagerie of songs in multiple genres around the festive staples of booze, overeating, cynicism, Santa sex. These bawdy, funny songs were balanced with a few more serious and one melancholic. The little audience participation/improv number was cute.

Notable performances: Scott Olynek, Justine Westby and Tenaj Williams from last year’s hit, hit it out of the park again — or as the British would say (perhaps more appropriately) for cricket  knocking it for six — and are joined by Selina Wong who adds a more chaste note.

Notable design/production: Sharing the stage and set with Lunchbox’s current show Last Christmas, Six in the City plants 13 trees with lights, and Joe and his keyboard. The costumes are simple and effective, especially Justine in her negligee, Tenaj in his boxers and Scott in his harness (which you might think might reference reindeers pulling sleigh but no …).

Notable direction: JP Thibodeau fresh from taking his hit musical to New York delivers no less attention to this smaller cast, smaller budget show. Hopefully we won’t lose him to the States anytime soon.

One reason to see this show: It’s festive fun and sex sells (and I’m sure they will sell out, too).

Naughty … But Nice: Six In the City runs at Lunchbox Theatre until Dec. 22. For tickets and more information go to fortemusical.ca.

Caroline Russell-King is a playwright, dramaturg, and instructor. She is a member of The Playwrights Guild of Canada, the Dramatist Guild of America and the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. You can find her work here at www.carolinerussellking.com.

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