Mother Superior blesses 'Sister Act' as 'joyful,' 'feel-good' musical

Veteran actress Hollis Resnik gears up for six-night run in high-powered, fun-nun show at the Philharmonic

Article Highlights

  • Showtimes are 8 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday; 2 p.m. matinees Saturday & Sunday
  • "Sister Act" runs Jan. 1-6, 2013
  • Tickets are $85 & $89; call 800-597-1900 or thephil.org
Hollis Resnik (Mother Superior) and Ta'Rea Campbell (Deloris Van Cartier) in 'Sister Act.' From Jan. 1 through 6, 'Sister Act' offers a rousingly good time. Broadway's musical comedy smash tells the story of a wannabe diva whose life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a crime and hides in the last place anyone would think to look - a convent! Tickets from $85.

Joan Marcus

Hollis Resnik (Mother Superior) and Ta'Rea Campbell (Deloris Van Cartier) in "Sister Act." From Jan. 1 through 6, "Sister Act" offers a rousingly good time. Broadway's musical comedy smash tells the story of a wannabe diva whose life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a crime and hides in the last place anyone would think to look - a convent! Tickets from $85.

From Jan. 1 through 6, 'Sister Act'  offers a rousingly good time. Broadway's musical comedy smash tells the story of a wannabe diva whose life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a crime and hides in the last place anyone would think to look - a convent! Tickets from $85.

Joan Marcus

From Jan. 1 through 6, "Sister Act" offers a rousingly good time. Broadway's musical comedy smash tells the story of a wannabe diva whose life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a crime and hides in the last place anyone would think to look - a convent! Tickets from $85.

  • What: Performance: Sister Act
  • Where: Artis—Naples
  • Cost: $85 - $89
  • Age limit: All ages

Full event details »

What: Musical based on the 1992 Whoopi Goldberg film about a lounge singer who enters witness protection in a convent

When: 8 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, Friday & Saturday; 2 p.m. Saturday & Sunday

Where: Naples Philharmonic Center for the Arts, 5833 Pelican Bay Boulevard, Naples

Cost: $85 & $89

Information: 800-597-1900 or thephil.org

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— Hollis Resnik describes "Sister Act" as "a feel-good musical."

She avoids any obvious nun puns in our interview, but then adds to her comments on the show, "It makes a joyful noise."

See, she's a "habitual" offender after all…

Audiences can expect comedy, great music, singing dancing and more when "Sister Act" rolls into the Naples Philharmonic for a six-night run on New Year's Day. The show - with the subtitle "A Divine Musical Comedy" - is adapted from the 1992 Whoopi Goldberg film of the same name.

"Sister Act" follows a would-be diva, lounge singer Deloris Van Cartier, who witnesses a crime. Out of options, the cops stash her in a convent. Saucy Deloris doesn't get on well with the strict Mother Superior - until she discovers an unknown religious side.

Resnik plays the deliciously tart-tongued Mother Superior, the role made famous by Maggie Smith. Resnick credits the show's great script, from Cheri and Bill Steinkellner, for much of the character's success.

"Mother Superior is very funny because the script is so well written," Resnik said. "Even a character with a stern point of view can be comedic."

Resnik said that she did watch - and enjoy - the film, now 20 years old, but prefers to create her own character.

"I always make a role my own," the actress said, "and never try to copy or be influenced by someone else’s performance."

The nuns all wear habits on stage. Audiences might think the costumes would hamper the cast, but the Catholic cloaks are "quite comfortable," Resnik reveals.

Not even the wimple, the cloth that wraps around the neck and chin, affects the performance.

"The costume is not difficult to deal with at all," Resnik said. "Even covered in a wimple, you’d think our hearing would be affected but its not."

Resnik loves the last scene of the show, where Ta'Rea Campbell's "nun on the run" Deloris and the Mother Superior finally resolve their issues and "come together."

"We have a blast in the finale," Resnik said.

Some of the original tunes from composer Alan Menken and lyricist Glenn Slater include "It's Good to Be a Nun," "Sunday Morning Fever," "Lady in the Long Black Dress," and finale "Spread the Love Around."

"'Sister Act' has something for everyone," Resnik said. "Audiences can leave the theatre feeling great!"

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