Sunday, December 3, 2017

The Winter Wonderettes at TheaterWorks

I went to a final dress rehearsal for "Winter Wonderettes," written by Roger Bean and presented by TheatreWorks Florida at the the Davenport Community Campus  (8 W Palmetto St, Davenport, Florida 33837). This is the second production in the inaugural season of Theatre Works Florida. Scott Cook founded this new production company and I am always excited to see a new cultural hub pop up like a mushroom in the woods of Florida.

The Wonderettes offered a scrumptious musical confection of holiday hits. This seasonal celebration finds the girls entertaining at the annual Harper’s Hardware Holiday Happening but when Santa turns up missing, the girls must use their talent and creative ingenuity to save the holiday party! Featuring great ’60s versions of holiday classics such as “Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” “Run, Rudolph, Run,” and “Winter Wonderland,” the result is, of course, fun and fabulous. This energetic and glittering holiday package is guaranteed to delight audiences of all ages.

I felt self conscious going in to the rehearsal since I seem to have an unending cough. I had to step out in the second act because I needed to get a drink of water to stop my hacking. A hitch in the rehearsal came when one of the Wonderettes had an intense migraine so she had to be driven home, but the rehearsal must go on. I decided to sketch one of the Wonderettes twice to account for the missing actress. The assistant director or stage hand read her lines to fill out the full run through of the show.

This was a high energy production with the actresses in constant motion, dancing and singing with endless 60s kitch. In an interactive bit with the audience they asked "Who is the most famous elf singer of them all?" Pam Schwartz guessed correctly, which I think they didn't expect, but it could very well happen with a full audience. The actresses seemed relaxed in the roles which required tons of energy. With the right audience this could be a hilarious night. Bring the whole family.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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