A Very Naughty Christmas (Woodward Productions)
Brisbane Powerhouse, Powerhouse Theatre
December 9 – 19
Featuring a live band and ten sexy performers, “A Very Naughty Christmas” is the holiday comedy event you didn’t know you had to experience. With Christmas classics as you’ve never heard them before, this show is bound to get you into the holiday spirit. And back as it is for its fifth helping, it really is the gift that keeps on giving…and giving… and giving, for this is Christmas at its most salacious.
The show’s adults-only sentiment is evident from the outset and from the moment things open with Steel Panther’s ‘Sexy Santa’, it is clear that Santa (Stephen Hirst) is the star of Christmas. Saucy from the start, he is down to his underwear within 10 minutes, such has become tradition of the totally inappropriate (#inagoodway) tone of the filthy festive folly. Aurelie Roque is similarly as wonderful as ever in delivery of jaded musical numbers and audience interaction alike, while an Andrews Sisters style bung, bung, bung, bung reappropriation of ‘Mr Sandman’ to ‘Mr Santa’ is full of suggestion. And audience participation in re-enactment of a “The Night Before Christmas” storytelling segment is hilarious as always.
This is low brow humour, but crafted with wonderful wit. Indeed, it is surprising how many opportunities there are for punny innuendo around the iconography of this time of year. The scripts and musical numbers alike are full of clever erotic worsmithery, especially in their ability to keep the show fresh for a fifth season. Still, appearance of a “Mean Girls” ‘Jingle Bell Rock’ from Santa and his helpers goes down a treat as it has in the past.
After Emily Kristopher’s play up of the controversial ‘Baby, It’s Cold Outside’ in attempted seduction of Elliot Baker and a desirous duet proposition of Santa in a highly-suggestive ‘Santa Baby’, one of the funniest face-hurting-from-laughter scenes comes from an attempted redirection of the tone of Santa’s message to be 2021 appropriate and inoffensively non-specific.
Directed and choreographed by Dan Venz and Maureen Bowra the energy of the show’s electric performers (Aurelie Roque, Carla Beard, Dan Venz, Elliot Baker, Emily Kristopher, Kate Yaxley, Patrick Whitbread, Shay Debney, Stephen Hirst and Taylah Ferguson) never wanes. And the live band (Chris Evans, David Spicer and Elliot Parker) is excellent in both turning familiar songs like ‘Santa Clause in Coming to Town’ into something never before imagined and adding energy to numbers like an SNL Christmas song classic.
With sexy carollers, a divine disco number and a tap-dancing nutcracker soldier, Brisbane’s favourite adults-only Christmas comedy is sure to have you feeling festive throughout. The now comedy cabaret tradition’s frisky fun is full of highlights, the memory of which will stay with you long afterwards, even if only in consideration of how dirty Christmas talk can literally spice up your life. With its peppering of pop culture references (including Elliot Baker leaning more into mumbling Mr Bean contrivances) and new take on mischievous Christmas concepts, “A Very Naughty Christmas” is sure to take its non-feint-hearted audience members on a sleigh ride to hilarity, regardless if they are on the naughty or nice lists.