‘Players’ slate dinner theater

Nancy Steinke and the Blue Earth Town and Country Players wanted to do something different this year, so they will stage “Uh-Oh, Here Comes Christmas!” for the 2013 Christmas Dinner Theater Production.

The play will be presented 7 p.m. Dec. 6-7 and 1 p.m. Dec. 8 at Blue Earth Area Middle School.

The price of $20 includes a roast pork dinner, with wassail and Christmas carols sung by the Madrigals of Blue Earth Area High School. Tickets are available at Blue Earth Chamber of Commerce or by calling (507) 526-2916.

Proceeds from the event will be split between the Town and Country Players and the high school music department.

If the production sounds familiar, the Players had staged “Uh-Oh, Here Comes Christmas!” in 2002.

“We were so fond of this show, we decided it was worth another look at it,” said Steinke, the director. “It is one of my very favorite Christmas ones we’ve ever done.”

Written by Robert Fulghum, who authored “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten,” the play is a series of scenes – some related, others not.

“Some are longer than others, some are funnier than others. Some that choke me up and bring a tear to my eye,” Steinke said. “The whole package of this show is entertaining and fulfilling. You get a warm holiday feeling from it. I like all of it.”

She said it is appropriate for all ages, but “may not have enough action for really young kids,”

The seven cast members appear as different characters throughout the 15 scenes.

Brian Roverud, Dan “Boomer” Welder and Nancy Willette were in the original production. Although Willette has since moved to the Twin Cities, she “loved the play so much and said, ‘Any way I can be in it, just for a little bit,'” Steinke said.

“Boomer has a really gorgeous [scene] called ‘The Good Stuff,’ about a father and his little girl. It’s really cute,” Steinke said.

The other four cast members are Pete Steinke, Lill Robinson, Sandy Guth and Johanna Hocker.

Guth has been in the chorus for summer musicals, but has not appeared in the dinner theater. Hocker is doing several related scenes “about the love/hate relationship with poinsettias and how they don’t die,” Steinke said.

Pianist will be John Engesser.

“A lot of the scenes have a quiet piano underscore that adds a great deal to the mood of that scene,” Steinke said.

The group put on the first dinner theater in 1986 and it has become a tradition.

“A good way to kick off the Christmas season with friends and family,” Steinke said. “We have some people who would never miss it. This is the way they begin their Christmas season. It’s a nice tradition to have.”