The curtain will rise Friday night on Sampson Community Theatre’s most recent production ”Nuncracker.” The play is based on a “Nunsense Christmas Musical” written by Dan Goggin. The SCT production is directed by Sandra Clifton.
“Nuncrackers” is a musical comedy that tells the story of the Little Sisters of Hoboken who decide to put on their first Christmas Show which will run on local cable television. The ensuing production produces not only confusion but a great deal of hilarity as the show progresses.
“This is a wonderful show and I am enjoying working with this wonderful cast. The audience will be rolling in the aisles as this cast performs,” shared Clifton.
The cast consists of a husband and wife, and mother and daughter all cast into a group, that if rehearsal was any indication, will bea delight to audiences, giving them a very entertaining evening watching the production.
Angela Martin is cast as Sister Robert Anne. Martin’s character is a streetwise nun from Brooklyn, N.Y., and she is one tough cookie, yet has a heart and soul of gold. The students at Mount Saint Helen love her because she speaks their language. In her role as Sister Robert Anne, she feels that she could truly be a star but the Rev. Mother will not let her be the star of the show. Martin brings all her expertise to the stage to produce a most memorable yet very funny character.
“This is one funny show. You can expect laughter and music. The show will get you in the Christmas spirit and help you get into a holiday mood,” expressed Martin.
The role of Reverend Mother, Sister Mary Regina, is being played by veteran actor Marcelle Powell. She is the Mother Superior of the Little Sisters of Hoboken. The Rev. Mother attempts to be strict and keep order, but things often get out of her control. She grew up in a circus family and her “showbiz” background and sense of humor always shines through her attempt at creating a tough exterior.
“I am very excited to be a part of this show.It is everything someone who loves comedy will enjoy. It is made even more fun because of acting with my daughter Caitlin. We both urge everyone to come enjoy what should be a great show at the Sampson Community Theatre,” asserted Powell.
Caitlin Joyner is a student at Hobbton High School, and this is certainly not her first performance. Her experience shines through as she plays the role of Sister Mary Hubert. Sister Mary Hubert is Mistress of Novices and is second in command to Mother Superior. She has wanted to be a nun all her life and at times finds it difficult to deal with problems she firmly believes are created by Mother Superior’s ineptness. She is very practical and she and Mother Superior have a healthy and humorous rivalry.
Sister Mary Paul, also known as Amnesia, was hit on the head with a crucifix and for a long period did not remember who she was. That character is played by Teresa Padgett. Now, everyone knows she is Sister Mary Paul, a country singer who jump-started her recording career as the first nun to appear at the Grand Ole Opry. Even though she has her memory back she always seems to be a “little vacant,” but is innocently endearing.
“I have enjoyed learning and doing this role. I think living with Guy (Padgett, her husband), has prepared me for this role. It is actually great to work along with him in the show. I am amazed that I almost had to force him to try for his first role in “South Pacific” and now he is a regular here at the Sampson Community Theatre. The show is going to be amazing, and we hope people will come see it,” remarked Teresa.
Jessica Watts has been cast as Sister Mary Leo ,who was a novice in the first three shows. She now has her black veil. She is very excited to be in the Christmas show, because Rev. Mother has allowed her to dance in the Nutcracker Ballet. Sister Leo had dedicated her life to becoming the first famous nun ballerina.
Possibly the scene thief of the show is Father Virgil Manly Trott, played by Guy Padgett. He is a Franciscan Father of Fort Wayne and grew up in the Mississippi Delta where he and his sister, Sister Mary Leo, were part of the Trott Family Singers. He now has his own radio show and the sisters invited him to participate in the Christmas program because they knew he could give them pointers on presenting a good show.
“I never thought I would enjoy being up on stage. But once I tried it, I became hooked. I love the character of Father Virgil and the other character I am ‘forced’ to play during the show. I have always been a bit of a clown but this show lets me have fun. The audience will love it,” cited Guy.
There are four young people that have been cast in the roles of the Mount Saint Helen’s students. The cast of two boys and two girls are intertwined throughout the production and are a big part of the Christmas show. They are played by Carley Jones in the role of Maria; Oliviyah Moore playing Louise; Lucas Jackson as John and Zachary Lucas cast as Billy.
Only one other cast member is heard from and that is the stage manager played by Nivia Batista.
The curtain rises at 8 p.m. Friday night and continues through next weekend. The Sampson Community Theatre is one of Sampson County’s best kept secrets. It is located at 115 Fayetteville St., Clinton. Tickets are: General - $10; seniors and students - $8. Evening performances: Friday-Saturday, Nov. 2 -3 and 9 -10 at 8 p.m. and matinees on Sunday, Nov. 4 and 11 at 3 p.m.