Erie Reader
November 29, 2012

A Very Goode Christmas


Don't worry; it's okay to immerse yourself in all things Christmas now. With the celebration of consumption behind, there are no more holidays sitting in the way of driving along streets ooh-ing and aah-ing at Christmas lights, gorging on enough eggnog to stuff a walrus, and picking the perfect tree that won't get thrown out until February without others chastising you for getting into the Christmas spirit too early.

Alright, maybe some people will turn their no-fun noses up in the air, but those Grinches are destined for coal anyway. While the season wouldn't be complete without "A Christmas Carol" or other classic tales, sometimes even a holiday as revered as Christmas needs a dash of irreverence.

Fortunately for you, there are four chances to see a Goode twist on a great holiday.

"Sometimes people think that I don't like Christmas and actually I love Christmas. I think Christmas is awesome," says Jeff Goode, the playwright behind "A Very Goode Christmas," which opens at 8 p.m. at Performing Artist's Collective Alliance Performing Arts Center and Theater (PACA) Friday, Nov. 30 with additional performances on December 1, 7, and 8 for mature audiences. "A Very Goode Christmas" is a festival of adult holiday comedies featuring "The Eight: Reindeer Monologues," a dark comedy directed by Jeff Rodland based on what would happen if Santa Claus was accused of sexual harassment, a topic that brings a new spin on a classic holiday.

"I think that if what you want is 'A Christmas Carol,' something which really reaffirms the true meaning of Christmas, those shows already exist and have been done so well," Goode says. "I've got nothing against 'Christmas Carol,' but if you want something different, you've already seen that, or you're not in the mood and want something funnier, something edgier and more irreverent, that's where I've found it's fun to play in that area, because there aren't that many shows of those that are well established. It's kind of about making sure Christmas isn't a one-note holiday."

In addition to the "Reindeer Monologues," which will play in the first half of each performance, Goode has an assortment of other short pieces that relate to the holidays that will play after a short intermission, such as the tale of when someone turns the idea of Santa into a religion and other unexpected twists.

"I think that's sort of what the heart of theater is all about," say Goode. "You bring people in the room and you start the show, but what's the last thing they expect to happen? I have fun with it."

Tickets for "A Very Goode Christmas" are $10 and doors open at 7:30 p.m. each night for a new way to kick the Christmas season off in a whole new way.