On Wednesday 8 December, Chronicle.lu got the opportunity to sit in on the dress rehearsal of the new production by Pirate Productions, the first "in-person" production it has put on since Melusina The Pantomime in November 2019, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We Need a Little Christmas - Yule Love It" is a production at the Centre Culturel Merl (26 rue Saint-Hubert, L-1744 Luxembourg - make time for finding a parking space if travelling by car).
The amateur musical theatre group group, which was founded in Luxembourg in 1979, is putting on a 5-performance production of festive cheer with a feel-good factor. Directed by Valerie Scott and Philip Dutton, its running time (including interval) is circa 2.5 hours. According to the publicity blurb, "We Need a Little Christmas - Yule Love It" is light-hearted, warm entertainment for all the family with songs, sketches and stories relating to European traditions for the Christmas and New Year period.
Set in two acts, the production comprises 13 "scenes" which include singing, story-telling, dancing, acting - including comedy in a mini-pantomime - something for everyone... With all the cast dressed in festive garments - Christmas jumpers and the like for those singing, - and the audience encouraged to participate in the sing-a-longs with many of the most popular traditional Christmas songs included in the repertoire, from Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, Santa Baby, Silent Night, The Holly and the Ivy and a Christmas "Pops Medley", as well as a couple less-known. Even the most Scrooge- and Grinch-like personalities will be warmed by this massively infectious dose of festive cheer. While it is difficult, and possibly unfair, to single out performances / performers, it would be amiss not to mention Jennie Kenton's rendition of Santa Baby and Catriona Gillham's rendition of Walking in the Air which are simply outstanding.
Meanwhile, Act 2's "Dinner for One" (an absolute delight, with Valerie Scott and Steve Wilkie serving up a classic) and "The Snowman" (by Raymond Brigg) are the stand-out dramatic performances of the evening, with "A Christmas in Romania" offering a new slant on gender equality; and then there is the hilarious British staple panto fare courtesy of "Good King Wenceslas" written by Rachel Parker (following up on her excellent and clever Melusina The Pantomime two years ago). Something for everyone, for all the family.
With a total cast of almost 30 and a back-stage drew of aver 20 (and even Santa makes an appearance) this is by no means a small operation: so many roles have been needed to put this production together. A massive congratulations to all involved, both those on stage and everyone behind the scenes.
Thu 9 Dec @ 19:30
Fri 10 Dec @ 19:30
Sat 11 Dec @ 15:00 & 19:30
Sun 12 Dec @ 15:00
Tickets cost €20 (students €10) and are available by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: 356339 (while all performances are already sold out, there is a waiting list). Seating is around tables, limited to 120 chairs per performance; this is a CoividCheck event.
For more information, see www.pirates.lu.