Herald Journal
Sunday, December 12, 2010

'Reindeer' offers inside dirt on jolly old elf

For the Herald-Journal

Somehow the words "sex" and "lies" are not synonymous with the jolly old man who sneaks down chimneys each year to deliver toys to all of the good little boys and girls.

However, the word "sneaks" seems appropriate because Santa's reindeer are fed up and telling the truth about what happened with Santa and Rudolph in "The Eight: Reindeer Monologues" showing at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday at Hub-Bub's The Showroom.

Jeff Goode's "The Eight: Reindeer Monologues" was introduced in Chicago in 1993 at the Hidden Theatre. In Goode's satirical, clever, dark comedy, the eight reindeer share their own witty, naughty, comical tale with the audience about what allegedly happened with Rudolph and the jolly old man. Only the reindeer know the truth. Or do they?

The Spartanburg Little Theatre's Next Stages, has collaborated with Hub-Bub for the past five years presenting shows geared to reach audiences who enjoy theater with creative, adult themes.

Jay Coffman, executive artistic director, who plays Cupid, a delightfully colorful and a bit flamboyant reindeer, says: "SLT's Next Stages allows the Little Theatre to put on productions which may not be suitable for our main subscription season. With lower cost and a little edgier, these productions produced in conjunction with Hub-Bub have sold out consistently year after year."

Hub-Bub's Showroom director, Stephen Long's set is clever and suitable: a reindeer locker room where they hang out to tell their side of what Santa is really like, tantalizing and provoking the audience with humorous hidden social and moral messages. Each locker is decorated to reflect each reindeer: from the coach Dasher to the macho, good ole country boy Comet to the precious, bubbly, innocent Dancer.

Not only are the monologues deliciously wicked, they poke fun at the commercial sensationalism of Christmas, corporate business and sexual harassment with the show ending on a funny, yet serious, peak of accusations made by Vixen, a provocative and misunderstood victim.

With five new members to Santa's team; Jessica Smith as Blitzen, Paul Board as Hollywood, Lavin Cuddihee as Dasher, Alaina Steading as Dancer and Peter Simms as Comet, combined with veteran reindeer Coffman as Cupid, Dan Harvey as Donner and Teresa Hough as Vixen, "The Eight" takes on a fresh attitude, and attitude they most certainly do have.

The hour-long show is not recommended for children younger than age 17 because of adult themes and language.

Call the Hub-Bub Showroom at 582-0056 or go to Hub-Bub.com for tickets. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 at the door.