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BWW Review: THE TWELVE DATES OF CHRISTMAS will gift you with laughter this holiday season!

Romantic comedies meet one-woman play in this must-see show of the holiday season!

BWW Review: THE TWELVE DATES OF CHRISTMAS will gift you with laughter this holiday season!

This holiday season is a lot different than the past. With increased restrictions due to COVID-19, live theatre is currently on pause with uncertainty as to when it will return. Thankfully, the Arts Club's one-woman play, THE TWELVE DATES OF CHRISTMAS, is available for streaming to satisfy all of your theatre needs this December. Starring Genevieve Fleming and Melissa Oei both taking on the lead role of Mary, this play follows a 30-something newly single woman as she navigates her way through the dating scene. After catching her fiancé locking lips with another woman on national TV, Mary goes on many dates that make her question whether she will ever find love again. If you're curious to see how Mary's love life plays out, you have until January 3rd to purchase a recorded stream of the show for $19 on the Arts Club website - it is definitely worth the watch!

Written by New York based playwright Ginna Hoben, the plot of this play was exciting, funny, and really highlighted the holiday season. It reminded me a lot of a Hallmark Christmas movie, but better and less predictable! I have to admit, I was a little skeptical in the beginning as to how captivating this show was going to be since it was a "one-person play;" however, it did not disappoint and genuinely exceeded my expectations. The show tackles a lot of common occurrences/ issues that people deal with over the holidays. From family members gossiping and prodding you about your personal life to aunties trying to set you up when you're single, this show has at least one thing that everyone can relate to over the holidays.

Directed by Barbara Tomasic with set design by Ted Roberts, the show was very well put together and contained a lot of surprises that made the show stand out. From a moving Christmas tree to props falling from the ceiling, the show went above and beyond to add a little magic to it. In addition, the sound and lighting designed by Kate De Lorme and Sophie Tang respectively, were excellently used in cohesion to enhance certain moments in the show. From mimicking a TV screen to several perfectly placed phone buzzes/rings; the attention to small details was impressive. A benefit of watching the recorded stream was that you got to see the show from different angles due to the use of different cameras. When attending in person, you are only able to experience the show from the view of your seat. This added benefit made the show more exciting to watch.

I had the pleasure of viewing the recorded stream with Genevieve Fleming as Mary. The moment she started talking, she captured my attention immediately. She played the character maturely, yet had many youthful moments which allowed her to show different sides of her character. Fleming was captivating to listen to as her storytelling style reminded me of banter between close friends after reuniting from being apart for a long period of time. I was thoroughly impressed by the different voices she used for each person she described in her narrative. Her impression of her mom in the play had me laughing a lot! Her accents, body mannerisms, tone, and volume level were very dynamic throughout the play, which moved the story along smoothly. Even though it was only one person for the duration of the show, Fleming embraced every character so well that I forgot that I was only watching her the whole time ... she was that good! Overall, I was very impressed with Fleming's performance. It was amazing that she perfectly memorized the whole show and didn't stumble or make a mistake once! The dialogue was so intricate, yet she made it so natural. It was like watching someone perform all the parts to a whole movie ... very impressive!

THE TWELVE DATES OF CHRISTMAS was like a riding a rollercoaster that I never wanted to get off of; I was having too much fun! It was humorous, yet heartbreaking at certain points. All you want the entire show is for Mary to find love and you spend the whole show rooting for her to be happy. The show gives you the kind of feeling you get when you read a good book: you fall completely into it and forget about your surroundings as the words paint the scenery and characters in your head. THE TWELVE DATES OF CHRISTMAS had me hooked the whole time and I definitely did not want it to end. Will Mary ever find love or will she be single for the rest of her life? Check out Arts Club's THE TWELVE DATES OF CHRISTMAS to find out!

THE TWELVE DATES OF CHRISTMAS is currently available for online viewing purchase at the Arts Club website: https://artsclub.com/shows/2020-2021/the-twelve-dates-of-christmas until January 3rd, 2021. The recorded stream of the show starring either Geneveive Fleming or Melissa Oei costs $19 with the link available for 30 days after purchase. After pressing play, you have 48 hours to view the show. Watch Parties of the show are also available for $35 and allow you to watch with other viewers at the same time. You will have access to a live commenting session during the show. See the Arts Club website for more details!

Photo Credit: Moonrider Productions, 2020


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