Sunday, December 12, 2010


REVIEW: David Sedaris’ “The Santaland Diaries” starring Jamie Morris

The Onyx Theater
953 E Sahara (in The Commercial Center)
Bldg 16

December 9-12, 2010
4 Performances ONLY

I am very upset that I saw “The Santaland Diaries” starring Jamie Morris late on Saturday night.

I wish I had seen it Friday so that I could have beat the bushes to tell everyone to catch the last two performances of the weekend. Jamie Morris is not only a talented playwright and satirist, he is also quite a good little actor. I have no idea how long this show is because not once did I check my Android to see what was going on outside of The Onyx Theater as I was simply beguiled by Morris’s skill at holding an entire audiences attention.


I swear.

David Sedaris is quite a little imp himself and I feel that he would have gladly sat back and roared with laughter as I did if he were to see this spot on production of his holiday classic short story about a soon to be having a mid-life chrisis Soap Opera extra wannabe who ends up as the world’s wryest Elf at Macy’s. While the Elf dreams of having smart cocktails with the Buchanan’s and the Quartermaine’s in the one to two pm block of afternoon TV, his reality is boorish oafs from New Jersey (Are there any other kind? I’m jes sayin”.) and a Macy’s demanded “Elf name”.

His is “Crumpet”.

You would surely understand if he takes a swig from his flask ever so often.


Crumpet takes us from his Elf training sessions (picture the Death Marches of Bataan with a peppy Japanese warlord leading the way.) to the locker room where one of the more fetching Elfs might just be flirting his way into a bathroom scene right out of “Born Innocent” (starring Linda Blair as the whorish Elf). The forced frivolity starts as soon as he is thrown into a roomful of Soap Opera extras and, to put it kindly, weirdos who seem to think that asking if they can were their Elf costumes home is a perfectly reasonable request.


Morris keeps you not only entertained, but, interested.At no point did I notice the fact that this was a one man show. Morris is so good as the bitchy little, too clever for his own good Crumpet, that between him and the excellent set, staging, lighting and source material you never miss any other possible actors. He gives such dead on impersonations of dozens of characters that you automatically see them in your head and fill the stage yourself with his wit and your own imagination.

He’s that good.

My only disappointment with “The Santaland Diaries” is that it ends tonight.

Put your jacket own and get thee to The Onyx Theater now!

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