Weary of the same old holiday theater fare? Then “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley,” Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon’s charmingly imagined sequel to Jane Austen’s masterpiece, “Pride and Prejudice,” may be for you.

Picking up two years after the conclusion of Austen’s tale, the always-reliable Mary Bennet is becoming dissatisfied in her role as the obedient middle sister as her siblings rollick in amorous adventures. When her witty, pretty and new married sisters assemble for Christmas at Pemberley, an unexpected invitee rouses Mary’s hopes for liberation, an intellectual kindred spirit and perchance even love.

“I was so pleased to find a holiday play that is warm and welcoming and also wonderfully funny. The script absolutely crackles with wit and romance,” says producing artistic director Aimee Hayes. “The best part of this sequel is that it doesn’t require familiarity with the book.”

Co-directing with Jeffrey Gunshol, Hayes leads a fine cast including Helen Jaksch as the introverted Mary and Ian Hoch as her shy, bookish admirer.

The play continues through Dec. 23 at Loyola's Marquette Theater. Visit southernrep.com for more information.

Bruce Burgun is a retired theater professor from Indiana University and a member of the American Theater Critics Association.


“Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley” 

When: Through Dec. 23

Where: Marquette Theater, Loyola University, 6363 St. Charles Ave.

Tickets: $40

INFO: (504) 522-6545 or southernrep.com