Colonial Players opens its 59th season Aug. 31 with Michael Hollinger's Incorruptible, an irreverent, politically incorrect farce set in a French monastery during the Dark Ages.
If the badinage heard before a scheduled rehearsal at Colonial Players' theater at 108 East St. in Annapolis is any indication of how funny this cast and crew can be, we're in for a comic treat. Sunday's mood was decidedly playful with barbs flying at a fast TV-sitcom pace.
Dressed in his brown monk's robe, Jamie Hanna became the good-natured target of such lines as: "Why do I want to sip Frangelico when I look at you?" and "When are you going to shave a ring in the back of your head?"
Director Tom Newbrough describes Incorruptible as "veering from Monty Python absurdity to South Park edginess as the monks scramble to financially fulfill their mission to help the unfortunate while wondering if the ends justify the means."
Abbott Charles and his brother monks have fallen on hard times since miracles stopped happening 13 years ago from the monastery's patron, Saint Foy, whose bones are displayed on the altar.
Pilgrims no longer come to Priseaux to pray and aren't make donations. They are going to another monastery where bones brought by a one-eyed minstrel are bringing miracles.
Even the pope chooses to go to Bernay where the convent's relic of Saint Foy is performing miracles.
Soon the desperate monks start robbing their own cemetery for bones that can be passed off as miracle-producing. This sort of trafficking of saintly relics occurred during the Middle Ages in Europe, according to playwright Hollinger.
Colonial Players' production will feature Danny Brooks as Brother Martin, second in command to Abbott Charles played by Edd Miller. Delores Miller plays Agatha, the Abbess of Bernay and Charles' sister and rival. Kristin Carter is Marie, Lawrence Griffin plays One-Eyed Jack, Jamie Hanna is Brother Felix, Scott Nichols is Brother Olf, and Mary MacLeod plays a peasant woman.
After Incorruptible, Colonial Players will present Kindertransport, a drama by Diane Samuels that explores mother-daughter relationships through the eyes of a German Jewish girl sent to England before the Holocaust, from Oct. 19 to Nov. 17. Slated for Jan. 11 through Feb. 9 is Matthew Barber's Enchanted April, a story of dispirited London women who find renewal together in a sunny Italian villa.
This season's musical will be the Cole Porter classic, Kiss Me Kate, which is scheduled to run Feb. 29 through April 5.
Hauptmann by John Logan will run from April 25 to May 24 to close the season. Here, Logan tells the story of Bruno Richard Hauptmann, who was convicted and put to death for the Lindbergh-baby kidnapping in the 1930s.
After opening with Friday-through-Sunday performances, 'Incorruptible' will run Thursdays through Sundays through Sept. 29. Tickets are $20 for general admission and $15 for seniors and students. Tickets for this show and season tickets can be purchased at www.cplayers. com or by calling 410-268-7373.