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New musical, Jingle Bell Rock Bottom, takes a different view on holiday cheer

A parody cabaret by MissCast Productions, Jingle Bell Rock Bottom is a show that pokes fun at some typical holiday stressors.
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Posted at 11:07 AM, Dec 14, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-14 13:07:13-05

MISSOULA — As December rolls on, there is no shortage of holiday cheer in Western Montana, but the holidays come with lots of stress that is rarely spoken about.

Jingle Bell Rock Bottom is a new show premiering this week. A parody cabaret by MissCast Productions, the show will poke fun at some typical holiday stressors.

Co-writers, Maisie Gospodarek and Jasmine Sherman have twisted classic holiday songs to make them less cheerful but a bit more realistic.

For example, one number is titled “It's the Most Exhausting Night of the Year,” a play on the Andy Williams song “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.”

Music for the cabaret is played by the local band, Pale People, who also perform their own holiday song during the show.

Gospodarek hopes that the show’s candor on the stress everyone faces during the holidays will help the audience feel less guilty about having less holiday cheer.

“Just come in… feel seen and be like ‘yes, that is my experience', and it’s really fun to see it presented in this funny way, and now I feel more prepared to go out and enjoy the holidays,” she says.

The holiday season is a time for many classic plays, including Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, which is showing at the Missoula Children’s Theater, and The Nutcracker, which will be performed at The Dennison Theater.

Sherman says while there are lots of great family shows to see in Missoula, they hope Jingle Bell Rock Bottom is an adult-friendly alternative.

“I think that's what sets us apart from other productions is this is the one to leave the kids, get the sitter, and come out and destress from everything, and maybe have some away-from-the-family time perhaps,” she says.

This will be the writing pair's second parody cabaret, and both Gospodarek and Sherman will be performing.

Jingle Bell Rock Bottom premieres at the Zootown Arts Community Center on Wednesday, December 13 and runs through Sunday, December 17, 2023. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. every night.

Tickets can be purchased at the door or online.

Alcoholic drinks can be purchased during the show, all proceeds from which will support the ZACC.

There will also be a raffle during each show for a gift basket from local businesses.