Candy Cane Tales and Holiday Carols

Originally Conceived and Written by John Cramer
Additional material written by Katie Danner, Jes Sudbrink,
and Jacob Sudbrink
Music and Lyrics by Various Artists
Produced by special arrangement with Alleycat Enterprises, Inc.


Directed by Jes Sudbrink and Jacob Sudbrink
December 6 to 22, 2013


Read the Review:
Waukesha Freeman

Photos:
Click on a photo to see a larger image

Photos By Carroll Studios Of Photography

Volunteer of the Production

Scott Baranowski

Sponsored In Part By

WCT projects are supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin.

Cast 

Sarah Albers

Ensemble, Soloist "Bring Him Home Santa"

Lily Baranowski

Daughter

Evelyn Barta

Ensemble, Minion

Jeff Barta

Ensemble, Heat Miser

Paul Burkard

Dad

Ruth Caves

Ensemble

Stephanie Christiansen

Ensemble, Soloist "I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas"

Lee Conrad

Ensemble, Grandma, Mrs. Claus

Jeff Davis

Ensemble, The Grinch

Kaitlyn Downing

Ensemble

Teri Downing

Mom

Evie Evans

Ensemble, Ballerina, Minion

Glen Fink

Ensemble

Martin Graffenius

Ensemble, Soloist

Sydney Johnson

Ensemble, Ballerina, Soloist "All I Want For Christmas … Teeth"

Hailey Kapenga

Ensemble

Allyson Kulinski

Ensemble, Rudolph, Cindy Lou Who

Kimberly Laberge

Ensemble

Laura Laberge

Ensemble

Karl Magsig

Ensemble, Sleigh Ride Duet

Grace McDonell

Ensemble, Sisters Duet

Chantae Miller

Ensemble, Minion

Nicole Morley

Ensemble, Sisters Duet

Debi Mumford

Ensemble

Stephanie Nilsen

Ensemble

Eddie Pronley

Son

Lindsey Retzlaff

Ensemble, Sleigh Ride Duet

Kaden Rhodes

Ensemble, Minion

Emma Schoultz

Ensemble, Ballerina, Minion

Shawn Spellman

Ensemble

Jeff Stark

Ensemble, Snow Miser, Francis Church

Nolan VanHaren

Ensemble, Max

Jim Volden

Ensemble, Santa Claus

Tammy Vrba

Ensemble

Production Staff 

Director/Choreographer

Jes Sudbrink

Director/Music Director/Orchestration Sequencer

Jacob Sudbrink

Stage Manager

Jennifer Allen

Scenic Designer/Master Carpenter

AJ Simon

Costume Designer

Nikki Maritch

Lighting and Sound Designers

Scott Fudali and Keith Handy

Properties Designer

Shawn Spellman

Wig Master

Anthony Mackie

Civic Theatre's annual show captures joy of Christmas

'Candy Canes' boasts cheerful songs and stories

By JULIE McHALE - TimeOut Theater Critic
December 12, 2013

WAUKESHA - It is often said that it takes a village to raise a child. That came to mind when I thought about the degree of involvement and dedication required to put together a Christmas show of such magnitude as the Waukesha Civic Theatre's yearly offering of "Candy Canes and Holiday Carols." John Cramer, who conceived the show for its first showing in 2009, and Jes and Jacob Sudbrink, who continue to tweak it, are largely responsible for its success. Other members of the community, including many children, make their significant contributions to this seasonal confection.

The show includes many varied stories, songs and dances; it is a good mix of secular and sacred, old and new, serious and humorous. If you don't like one vignette, the next one is sure to please. There are 26 separate scenes, all united with a colorful scenic design (A.J. Simon) and clever costuming (Nikki Maritch). Scott Fudali and Keith Handy also add their special lighting and sound effects.

Some of the outstanding scenes in Act I include some nostalgic numbers from the film "White Christmas," the antics of the Snow Miser, featuring Jeff Stark, and a tender duet with Lindsey Retzlaff and Karl Magsig, singing "Winter Wonderland."

A trio of young ones perform "I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas," belted out with conviction by Stephanie Christiansen; "All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth," earnestly delivered by Sydney Johnson; and "Bring Him Home Santa," poignantly sung by Sarah Albers.

"Carol of the Bells" is beautifully rendered by the whole ensemble, and "The Restroom Door Said Gentlemen," a clever parody, is strongly performed by some hearty male singers. "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer" also amused us, thanks to Lee Conrad's broad humor.

Act II opens with an ensemble number, "The Christmas Can-Can," vigorously performed by the entire ensemble. Then we're introduced to a family, tucked into a cozy corner downstage, where a father, mother and daughter interact and play a part in many of the scenes that follow. Paul Burkard, Teri Downing and Lily Baranowski execute their parts well. Lily Baranowski shines in "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus." Burkard always adds a comic flair.

Jeff Barta is well cast as the Heat Miser, and Marty Graffenius' beautiful tenor voice is a standout in his confrontation with Mr. Grinch.

The ethnic musical collage is engaging as the ensemble sings carols in other languages and dresses accordingly. Sudbrink arranged the medley. In fact, we can thank Sudbrink for most of the musical direction and arrangements. He is a very talented young man.

The two closing numbers, "Silent Night," very movingly arranged by Sudbrink again, and "I'll Be Home for Christmas," delivered with feeling by Eddie Pronley, both move us.

This year's show is dedicated to those who have served our country in the military. This World War II song brought back memories for those of us who have vivid recollections of that era. Unfortunately, there are still many engaged in military service who are probably longing to be home for Christmas. It was a thoughtful idea to bring that reality to mind.

All in all, this is a good family show that will entertain all ages.

Review Title

By Reviewer Name
Posted: Month 16, 2012

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Review Title

By Reviewer Name - WaukeshaNOW Theater Critic
Month 12, 2012

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Student Discount is available for children and any patron who is able to display a current student ID. Senior discount applies to all patrons 60 years or older.

For this particular performance, all tickets left unsold one hour before curtain will be sold for whatever the patron can afford.

Subscriber Discount is available to any subscriber for unlimited additional tickets outside their package.

10 ticket minimum per performance required.

Educational Group Rate is only available for all educational groups and Boy and Girl Scout troops. 10 ticket minimum per performance required.

Volunteer of the Production - Scott Baranowski

Scott is a parent of one of our child actors. He has taken on the "role" of crew member and has done an exceptional job. He has never done this before, but you would never know that by watching him. He always has a smile on his face, and is ready to jump in wherever he is needed. His dedication to this production is phenomenal, and he was an integral part of our crew!