Here come ‘The 12 Days of Christmas’

Hawkeye Community Theatre will bring one of the classic Christmas songs to life during its December play.

The play is written by Renee Calarco adapted from the traditional Christmas song, ”The 12 Days of Christmas.”

“This play is loosely based on the classic Christmas song of the same name,” said Mary Jo Laupp, the play’s director. ”The main character, Shirley Partridge, has inherited the all-important job of gathering everyone for the first official singing of the song, but she endures many problems along the way.”

“The 12 Days of Christmas” will be performed Thursday through Saturday with shows at 7 p.m. each evening plus a 2 p.m. matinee on Saturday.

Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased online at hawkeyetheatre.com.

Christmas is just around the corner, and Shirley the Partridge is a bit nervous because it’s her very first time carrying out the ancient family tradition of gathering the French hens and calling birds, and everyone else, for the official singing of “The 12 Days of Christmas.”

With strict instructions from her mom, Grammy, and Great Grammy to guard the five golden rings, Shirley sets off on a quest to find the song participants.

But there are some bumps in the road. The sweet and sappy turtledoves get injured while doing their adorable mating dance. The manic and overworked calling birds decide to postpone Christmas until spring when shipping and fuel costs are lower. The six geese a-laying have flown south to Florida for the winter taking most of the seven swans a-swimming with them.

And just when things can’t possibly get any worse for Shirley, the evil Christmas Hoarder steals the five golden rings, adding to his growing holiday collection of Christmas ornaments, Hanukkah menorahs, Kwanzaa fruits, Diwali candles and entire Thanksgiving dinners.

But things begin looking up when Alyssa — a super cool steampunk swan — befriends the grumpy Shirley and joins her on her quest.

Will they be able to save Christmas? Or will they decide to break the tradition and mix things up a little?

For the December play, audience members will see some new faces to the Hawkeye stage, along with familar faces.

“There are a few new faces to the Hawkeye, but several of these kiddos have been in productions with Comedia Musica Players and Stage Door Productions,” Laupp said. ”There are a handful of performers I’ve worked with before and quite a few who I’m working with for the first time. They bring so much energy to the stage and are just really excited to be at rehearsal. And their energy is so contagious. I can be completely worn out and ready to crash for the day, and then I start working with these wonderful young people, and suddenly I’m all wound up and energized.”

With fresh dialogue and vivid characters, “The 12 Days of Christmas” is a playful, modern interpretation of the classic Christmas song.

“For the staging, we want lots of shine and color for Christmas so we’ve kept the wall of the set black so we can add festive splashes of color all over the stage,” Laupp said. “One of the cast members is even creating some original artwork on the set to help set the mood.”

One special feature of the December show is that a portion of the proceeds from ticket sales and concessions will help to fund the Hawkeye Theatre Scholarship Fund.

“I am deeply grateful for my assistant director, Madison Puntillo, who has been an amazing source of ideas, creativity, and support,” Laupp said. “I first worked with her when she was in the August show at the Hawkeye — which I directed — and I’m thrilled to share one more experience with her before her internship ends and she heads back to college.”

If You Go

What: Hawkeye Community Theatre play ”The 12 Days of Christmas”

When: 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Saturday

Where: 521 N. 12th St.

Admission: $10

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