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Archikulture Digest

by Carl F Gauze

Archive for December, 2007

A Tuna Christmas

Tuesday, December 4th, 2007

A Tuna Christmas
By Jaston Williams, Joe Sears, and Ed Howard
Directed by Pat Flick
Starring Brad DePlanche, Philip Nolan
Orlando Shakespeare Theater, Orlando Fl

There’s nothing as interesting as a White Trash Christmas celebration. No need to worry about the polished perfection of a Niemen Marcus catalog, even the smallest success can make the holidays seem worth the trouble of chilling a new case of Budweiser. Christmas is particularly poignant in microscopic Tuna, Texas. With a few homes, a 275 watt AM station and a gun shop, the contest for best holiday decoration is more exciting than the Macy’s parade. It’s almost as exciting as watching local comic heroes Phillip Nolan and Brad DePlanche change costumes every 30 seconds as they play the 2 dozen or so residents of this All-American town.

You need a score card to keep track of Nolen and DePlanche, and it’s hard to you’re your favorite roll. For DePlanche it’s either Peety Fisk and his collection of rescued animals, or Didi Snavely as the bitter gun dealer. Peety almost gets maudlin telling his version of the Gospel story, but veers away at the last instant. Nolan shined as Aunt Pearl fighting a war against Blue Jays, and as slutty waitress Inita Goodwin. And while the set was beautifully done, the most impressive moment came when R. R. Snavely (Nolan) got his Christmas wish – a ride on a real UFO, complete with smoke machine and probing. That’s the one gift I’ve always wanted to give, but I can never figure out where to order it from. Instead, I’ll just have to recommend Tuna Christmas, a comic holiday gem.

For more information on Orlando Shakespeare Theater, visit