OGUNQUIT – Looking at the credits for “The Drowsy Chaperone,” now playing at the Ogunquit Playhouse, one realizes that it took a small committee of writers, musicians, lyricists and choreographers to put together this award-winning musical.

That seems about right, given the show’s long and wide reach into theater history. Some have called the play a pastiche, but they must have meant that in a good way, as the play’s onstage narrator might put it.

In any event, this fine Ogunquit production pulls it all together to deliver a good time at the theater. It’s a colorful, kinetic and (the one drawback) sometimes a bit loud show that comes to wacky and wonderful life as a dingy apartment is transformed into the scene of a gaudy show-biz wedding.

The narrator — or “Man in Chair,” as his role is designated — is central to the concept of the play-within-a-play. He’s a theater enthusiast who lets us in on his imagining of a 1928 musical he never saw.

Television personality Carson Kressley, making his stage debut, is just about perfect in the role. Whether it was director Casey Hushion or someone else who landed Kressley for the job, they got the right guy.

Anyone who has seen Kressley’s many reality TV appearances (“Queer Eye for the Straight Guy,” “How to Look Good Naked”) knows that he can generate a lot of genial but also sometimes slightly obsessive energy. Cozy in his armchair in the beginning and playing the “Drowsy” soundtrack on his record player, Kressley’s Man introduces, comments upon and later joins in the action of the play.

The costumes are colorful and the action is fast-paced, full of much song and dance and replete with dashes of corny vaudevillian humor.

The tone remains fairly consistent, with numbers mostly oversold by characters who are eager to please and/or impress in an old school, over-the-top sort of way.

Megan Nicole Arnoldy plays the young actress who sings, in one of the best all-around numbers, about how she doesn’t want to “Show Off” anymore. Arnoldy also shone on Friday night in “The Bride’s Lament,” which turns into a truly crazy ensemble piece.

Veteran actress Georgia Engel, returning to a role she originated on Broadway, is still in possession of that unmistakable soft and sweet voice best known through her years on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show.” She was excellent in her featured number, “Love is Always Lovely in the End,” and her ditsy forgetfulness was a favorite of several running jokes in the show.

Other highlights included Todd Alan Johnson’s “Adolpho,” Liz Larsen’s “As We Stumble Along” and Joey Sorge’s “Accident Waiting to Happen.”

Marc Kessler adds some spunky tap to choreography that’s as charming as is the show as a whole.

This “Chaperone” will prove a tough act to follow for the 78th season of the Ogunquit Playhouse. 

Steve Feeney is a freelance writer who lives in Portland.