Book, Music & Lyrics: Dan Goggin. S.Q.U.I.D.S. (Southeast Queensland Independent Dramatic and Musical Society). Director: Julie Jones. Musical Director: John Carey. Choreographer: Carol Carey, Tamzin Franz. Redcliffe Cultural Centre, Redcliffe, Qld. Oct 6 – 8, 2011. Touring to Narangba (Oct 15), Gympie (Oct 22) and Chermside (Nov 5).

I was looking forward to the production of Nunsense by the recently formed SQUIDS and was more than pleasantly surprised at the standard of their work. Well sung, with well-drilled chorus routines, led by five strong principals, the show worked well for its targeted audience. Nunsense is the perfect musical for community groups with its audience participation, plethora of nun gags, bad puns, and off-Broadway sounding tunes. I doubt that the mostly senior audience got the theatrical in-jokes in the lyrics, but who cares, they enjoyed themselves. Deanne Scanlon held the piece together as Sister Mary Regina, and made the most of her “Turn Up the Spotlight” number, as did Erin Low as Sister Mary Amnesia, with her “I Could’ve Gone To Nashville.” Fiona Jassim (Mary Robert Anne) and Sarah Ashby (Mary Leo) scored with “Playing Second Fiddle” and “Soup’s On” (the Dying Nun Ballet), but it was Naomi Drogemuller as Sister Mary Hubert, who brought the house down twice; the first act tap-dancing closer “Tackle the Temptation with a Time Step,” and the Gospel finale “Holier Than Thou.” Julie Jones’ direction could have handled more pace, but John Carey’s three-piece group kept the musical numbers tight.

Peter Pinne

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