Here comes ‘A Nutty Nutcracker Christmas’

It is a long-standing tradition for Hawkeye Community Theatre to present a children’s holiday show each December. That tradition continues this year under the direction of Mary Jo Laupp, who has chosen a musical that puts a modern twist on a classic tale.

“A Nutty Nutcracker Christmas” includes all of the familiar characters from “The Nutcracker,” but instead of Clara, it focuses on her brother Fritz. Fritz is obsessed with a certain video game and tries his hardest to beat the most difficult level of the game.

But the video game is a trap! The Mouse King has an evil plan to destroy Christmas as soon as the level is conquered.

After Fritz is successful in his quest to beat this difficult level, the Mouse King goes to the land where all Christmas toys are created, Christmas Wood, to carry out the rest of his scheme. Thank goodness a hero comes to save Christmas!

In the case of “A Nutty Nutcracker Christmas,” the hero is actually a heroine. It is up to a girl to save the day when Fritz just doesn’t know what to do! Thankfully, in the end Christmas is saved and Fritz learns quite a bit along the way.

The fact that “A Nutty Nutcracker Christmas” is a musical was a huge part of what appealed to Laupp about the show. She said she wanted to give area kids the chance to be in another musical because she sees how much they love to participate in musical theater.

Laupp added that it’s also fun for her to watch kids sing, dance and act on stage.

She feels like the audience will really enjoy watching how each of the characters grows throughout the show.

“A lot of girls will enjoy having a female save the day,” said Laupp. “The Nutcracker has to do all of the fighting with the Mouse King. Fritz also grows a lot. He has a negative opinion of his sister and ballet. While he is in Christmas Wood, the characters perform for him and he ultimately decides that maybe there is more to life than video games.”

Another fun twist to the show is that the actor cast as the Mouse King is a girl. Perhaps she will be called the Mouse Queen instead?

“It will be a lot of fun to see the heroine and the villain bend traditional stereotypes of what gender a hero and villain are supposed to be,” Laupp said. “What’s even more fun? The Nutcracker and the Mouse King happen to be cousins.”

She especially enjoys the fact that this show in particular has become somewhat of a family affair, as siblings and cousins perform on stage together.

“A Nutty Nutcracker Christmas” opens at Hawkeye Community Theatre, 521 N. 12th St., Dec. 6 through Dec. 8 at 7 p.m., with an additional matinee performance on Dec. 8 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 each and will be available at the door for each performance.

Cast List:

Nutcracker/Marie – Malaney Butrick

Fritz – Bo Tracy

Mouse King – Alicia Reed

*Clara – Katie Delaney

*Father – Dennis Morgan

*Mother – Claire Asay

*Mr. Drosselmeier – Nathan Graves

*These actors will also be Christmas Wood Citizens

Christmas Wood Citizens

Mayor of Toy Town – Jillian Leman

Fairy #1 – Kylie Reed

Fairy #2 – Rylie Reed

Other fairies – Sophie Poole, Shayley Butrick, Caleigh Klass, Kennedy Eastwood, Abi Munden, Ellsie Cole

Christmas Wood Chorus

Destiny Farhat, Nevaeh Farhat, Elly Habben, Lilly Powell, Madi Davis, Emma Davis, Serenity Converse, Rose Coppinger, Kate Birkey, Sol Birkey, Sophia Carlson, Lilly Johnson, Grace Nichols, Braden Kammerer, Briellye Coppinger, Ben Barker

Toys

Belen (ballerina bear) – Katelyn Ganzeveld

Stuffed Cat – Manuela Rodriguez

Stuffed Dog – Serenity Feldmann

Stuffed Bunny – Olivia Daniel

“Barbie” type Doll – Tristen Holst

Ballerina Doll – Ryleigh McFarland

“Porcelain” Doll (dressy) – Alexa McHon

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