Party Time

By Dan and Alison Tingley

 

The Return of the Darkashians is now at the Station Dinner Theatre and Tavern. It was written by David W. Mitchell, Adele Crotty, and Jawn Gross and is directed by Paul Uranowicz. The show is loosely based on pop culture, but you really don’t need to know anything about it to get the jokes. For example, here’s a quick run-down of what we know about the Kardashians and Honey Boo Boo. The Kardashians are a bunch of rich people who are famous for being famous. The brother, or one of them, was on “Dancing with the Stars.” He was terrible. We think some woman claiming to be Bruce Jenner is related to them somehow. And there might have been a sex tape. (If you’re thinking about becoming famous, DO NOT make a sex tape.) Also, Honey Boo Boo is some sort of redneck child beauty queen.

The characters are as follows. Donna Marie (Dim) Darkashian – mother of the baby and clueless as hell. Cole Digger – a regular guy and Dim’s husband. Mik Darkashian – blind, mafia-like patriarch of the family. Franny Darkashian – former stripper, Cole’s mother, and Mik’s wife. Hope Darkashian – seemingly normal young widow. Funny Hoo Hoo Child – former child beauty queen and friend of Dim. Rabbi Marty Feldman – hired online to perform the service for the baby. What could possibly go wrong?

The audience members are guests at party thrown by Dim. It turns out that she wants to throw the bash for her daughter, who has yet to be named at age one.  The audience gets to participate in the process of naming the baby. Of course, since the Darkashian family has some seeming mafia ties, there is a murder, and everyone is suspect. The show is broken up into four parts, and the actors serve the meal in character, spacing the audience-pleasing, plentiful courses throughout the show.

The cast includes Becca Coleman (Donna Marie Darkashian), Zach Work (Cole Digger), Carrie Smith (Franny Darkashian), Barry McAndrew (Mik Darkashian), Trisha Shallenbarger (Hope Darkashian), David Durst (Funny Hoo Hoo Child), and Paul Urbanowicz (Rabbi Marty Feldman). They all do a great job at getting the audience to participate and making sure everyone has a good time.

The show is funny and intentionally cheesy, and there are a few twists and turns in the plot. There are a lot of great one-liners and jokes in the script. The set and costumes are appropriate. Actually, the costumes are amusingly inappropriate.

Coleman plays dumb as well as anyone we’ve ever seen. She is hilarious. She looks completely spaced-out through the entire show. That’s not an easy task and we commend her for her performance. We’d love to see her in more performances like this.

Durst is downright hysterical from beginning to end. Seeing him dance has to be the highlight of the show.

McAndrew delivers yet another perfect performance. It’s always a pleasure to watch him on stage. Smith is as outrageous as ever. Work shows a lot of talent and plays well off of Coleman. We’re glad to see him back at the Station. Shallenbarger and Urbanowicz deliver fine performances in their smaller, but important roles. Everyone stays in character while serving, which makes the dinner fun. So, if you don’t like the company at your table, you still have that to look forward to.

The Return of the Darkashians runs through March 2.  It’s a laugh-out-loud murder mystery and definitely a fun night out. Call (814) 864-2022 or go on line to www.canterburyfeast.com for show times, reservations, and access to the season schedule.

 

 

 

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