SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4) — This Christmas time, enjoy holiday cheer with an irreverent Christmas play to support Salt Lake City’s homeless.

The Lord of Misrule is a donation-based play produced by the Wasatch Theatre Company to help Our Unsheltered Relatives during this holiday season.

The play is inspired by a real Christmas tradition that started in ancient Rome when Christmas was Saturnalia. A beggar would be crowned the Lord of Misrule, who would then preside over drunken mobs and Christmas parties.

“We wanted [the play] to be inspired by this local tradition of reclaiming Christmas for people who are homeless or in poverty — the people who need Christmas the most,” RJ Walker, the producer and playwright of The Lord of Misrule, said.

The Christmas play is about a corrupt Televangelist Lucas Karol who heals the “sick,” performs “exorcisms,” and also collects donations from his followers for these miracles on his daytime TV show, Scriptures Unscripted.

As the pastor performs a version of A Christmas Carol that reinforces society to give him money, a rowdy mob — the audience — hijacks the show. The pastor, his wife, and his special guests are forced to obey the orders of the Lord of Misrule who is leading the mob while performing their Christmas pageant. 

The show is free for all to attend, and any money you do choose to donate to Our Unsheltered Relatives will directly impact the play by how the actors perform in the show.

With enough donations, one character could be forced to maintain a half-squat the entire performance, another you can make eat a habanero pepper, and more. As more and more of these challenges are piled onto the characters, more of their real personalities rise to the surface.

“The show is absolutely ridiculous. If I had to liken it to anything, I would say it’s a cartoon,” Walker said.

The play is showing at two locations:

  • December 16th and 17th, 8 p.m., at The Box 124 400 W, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
  • December 22nd, 23rd at 8 p.m., 24th at 2 p.m., at The Alliance Theatre 602 E 500 S Suite E101, Salt Lake City, UT 84102