Sunday, March 19, 2023

Crumpet the Elf Comes to Norfolk in the ‘Santaland Diaries’

It has been almost 25 years since comedic author David Sedaris brought his witty recollection of working as an elf at Macy’s in Manhattan to audiences of National Public Radio (NPR).  Since then, reading/listening to the Santaland Diaries has become a classic holiday tradition for many, especially those in the LGBTQ community along with more traditional productions such as The Nutcracker, A Peanuts Christmas and A Christmas Carol.  

This holiday season, Virginia Stage Company is bringing the Santaland Diaries stage show to Hampton Roads as a special late night show for “mature elves only.”  This hilarious one-man-show takes us back to a time before smartphones and the internet to when Sedaris was one of Santa’s Elves at Macy’s Department Store. In this one-act play, the struggling writer, who chooses the elf name “Crumpet,” weaves an unbelievable tale of drunken Santas, lascivious actors, and combative parents. Come laugh, drink and make merry with your at the Wells Theatre. This late night holiday treat is for adults only and will brighten the holiday season.

With sardonic wit and incisive social critiques, David Sedaris has become one of America’s pre-eminent humor writers. He is the master of satire and one of today’s most observant writers addressing the human condition, especially apparent in his latest book, a collection of his diaries entitled Theft By Finding: Diaries 1977-2002. Sedaris is contributor to the radio program This American Life, has done many national reading tours including a stop in Norfolk in April 2017.  His other notable books include Me Talk Pretty One DayDress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, and Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls. This presentation of Santaland Diaries is performed by New York City-based performer, Matt Densky.

Matt Densky is no stranger to Christmas shows. In addition to having previously played this role at Music Theatre of CT, Densky has also performed as Young Max in How the Grinch Stole Christmas! at Madison Square Garden and most recently as Sky in Kris Kringle – The Musical at NYC’s Town Hall.  Hampton Roads Theatre fans may remember Matt from Virginia Musical Theatre’s productions of The Little Mermaid (Scuttle) and Nice Work if You Can Get It (Jimmy Winter). Other credits include Flotsam/Scuttle in the US Regional Premiere of Disney’s The Little Mermaid at Tuacahn Amphitheatre, as well as recent regional productions of The Rocky Horror Show (Riff Raff), Rock of Ages (Franz), The Full Monty (Malcolm), Man of La Mancha (Sancho), and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Puck). Matt holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from the University of Cincinnati – College Conservatory of Music and is a proud member of AEA.

Santaland Diaries has weekend performances starting Friday, December 15 and runs for two weekends only. 10 pm on December 15-16 and December 22-23. 7pm on December 17. Tickets are $35.

Virginia Stage Company is southeastern Virginia’s leading theatre destination, serving an audience of over 70,000 annually both at the Wells Theatre and throughout the community. Virginia Stage Company’s mission is to “enrich, educate, and entertain the region by creating and producing theatrical art of the highest quality.”

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