The North Pole and Santa’s Workshop were saved Saturday morning as the Pittsburg High School Theatre Department brought the story of “Santa and the Wicked Wazoo” to life.
The Ninth Annual Breakfast with Santa, which is the Mt. Carmel Foundation’s gift to the children of Pittsburg, drew an estimated 400 people for a one-act play by first-time PHS performers, along with a breakfast provided by the foundation and a chance for children to meet Santa and his elves.
Children learned the tale of the year when both a leprechaun (Dominic Stefanoni) and the Wicked Wazoo (Gracie Terry) and her trolls (Amanda Bourbina, Adia Johns and Mattie Helwig) showed up at the North Pole.
Santa (Gabriel Arbarca), Mrs. Claus (Devon Coulter) and their helpers and elves are hard at work preparing for Santa’s big Christmas Eve run when they are startled by a knock at the door, which they initially worry could be the Wicked Wazoo (Gracie Terry).
Instead, it’s a hot-tempered leprechaun, who left his village because of his unusual height and arrives in the North Pole demanding Santa shrink him.
Instead, the leprechaun finds himself on security duty at the North Pole, defending Santa’s workshop from the Wicked Wazoo and trolls while learning that it’s alright to “be himself.”
“It’s a great family event,” said Kayla Joy, who assisted the foundation with the event and also is a high school “drama mama.” “It’s a great opportunity for the kids to see what being in a production is all about.”
The performance was entirely student-run, and directed by PHS senior Maddie Weidert and junior Coral VanBecelaere.
Weidert said she enjoyed the moments in which children in the audience were encouraged to interact with the actors.
“For a lot of our shows we don’t get to interact with kids as much,” she said. “Seeing the kids interact with Santa was cool.”
“It hypes you up when you hear the kids talking to you,” added VanBecelaere.
Weidert said events like Breakfast with Santa inspire children to pursue theater.
“A lot of these kids will grow up seeing the tradition and will grow up excited to see the shows,” she said.
Cast members are: Mrs. Claus, Devon Coulter; Santa, Gabriel Arbarca; Leprechaun, Dominic Stefanoni; Clown, Katie Painter; Dancing Doll, Reagan Wood; Wicked Wazoo, Gracie Terry; Maureen, Katy Brown; Helpers, Abby Wilson, Susan Caffrey, Malayna Brown, Bailey Julian, Destinee Kelly-Madison, Jadrian Reece; Elves, Morgan Rewerts, Brisa Pfaff; Trolls, Amanda Bourbina, Adia Johns and Mattie Helwig.