Sweet Santaland

I have an in with a friend of a friend who’s dating a guy who knows a so-and-so and I’ve been getting to go to some shows at Zach Scott lately, and even though this is only my second one I’m just sold on it, really. I love Zach Scott. Loooooove it.
Ever since I’ve moved here back in 2003 I have wanted to see Santaland Diaries. It’s one of my favorite David Sedaris stories in one of my favorite Sedaris books (“Holidays On Ice”) and I had kindof a picture in my head of how the play was going to be done, and I was prepared…for something COMPLETELY different.
This was just excellent- first, they had the dazzling and deliciously saucy Meredith McCall sing us some songs to get us in the mood for some bawdy holiday fun, and then Martin Burke came out and performed “Dinah”, based on “Dinah, The Christmas Whore”; another story from “Holidays”. Martin Burke has a boundless, contagious energy that’s absolutely essential in a comedy cast of two, and this piece is perfect for showcasing that as he flows effortlessy through different characters. Then Meredith sang a couple more songs (far too few, I would love to have had more from her), including a song by Jason Robert Brown, which I was really excited about because I love him. And then the piece de resistance- Martin performed Santaland Diaries.
Santaland Diaries the story is pretty lengthy for a short story, especially one of David’s. Santaland Diaries the play, however, is a rapid-fire succession of anecdotes interspersed with zings! and jokes and one-liners. It is just hilarious. Martin has this way of interacting with the crowd like that one cool lady at Universal Studios who remembers you and waves as you go through the Terminator 3D show with your Dad for the eleventh time that day- he makes it feel less ike a theatre, less like a play, and more like the most outrageous story youve ever heard from your friend across a table at Schlotzsky’s. It’s a beautiful thing.
I think that comes out a lot with Zach- there’s an edginess in the production but a familiarity in the performances, you know? Even with Rocky Horror there was still so much audience interaction with Joe York you felt like you were trapped inside that mansion too.

Looooooved Santaland Diaries. Absolutely loved it, and it runs until January 7th so you have plenty of time to see it after you finally get rid of all those cousins :o)

1 Comment so far

  1. Sam (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 2:29 pm

    You should also go to the Paramount as well. Always great shows in the space. Austin has a lot of theatre, comedy and improv that is really awsome its just hard to see everything.
    You should check out the AIC at ColdTowne. Excellent! If you are lucky you can grab some tickets off stubdog.com as they offer half price tix to this show. They are in houston and now austin. Good luck

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