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CLD presenting Scrooge on Vacation March 9-11

March 3, 2016   ·   0 Comments

It is no small effort to put a theatrical production on that involves 10 cast members each playing several characters and many volunteers, each also with many roles to fill, along with the Director and Assistant Director and Choreographer.

This tremendous effort will actually result in the premier performance, by Creative Partners on Stage Players, of Scrooge on Vacation next week at Theatre Orangeville.

Co-written exclusively for Community Living Dufferin (CLD) performers by Elizabeth Glenday and Kristen Gamache, who are the Director and Assistant Director, respectively, everyone is very excited about this upcoming production. Ms. Gamache has designed the choreography as well.

Actors Colleen Curran and Brianne Ellis, took a few minutes from rehearsal for a brief telephone interview this week to tell us a little bit about the show and the many reasons why we should fill the seats to enjoy the fun.

To tell something about the premise of the show, old Scrooge’s great grand-nephew, who bears the names of Fred Ebenezer Scrooge McGillicuddy, is, like his predecessor, something of a workaholic and rather grumpy with it. He believes that vacations are a waste of time. The Cratchit descendents are also part of his life and there is even a Tim amongst them. Somehow persuaded to take a waste-of-time vacation, as a way of getting away from the office and the Cratchits, Fred Ebenezer Scrooge McGillicuddy heads for a holiday hotel. 

Laughing at the whole concept, Ms. Curran told us that she is playing the role of “that grumpy old fella, Scrooge.” When Scrooge gets to his vacation place, whom should he see but the very family he was hoping to escape – the Cratchits. However, that is not to be the end of his frustrations, for he encounters a great many strange and very amusing characters, including several Zombies, rather odd hotel staff and – oh no – a number of ghosts. We could not even guess at the ending of the plot.

This being the CLD performers, who love music and love to sing, there are songs and dancing as part of the show, making it even more fun.

All the songs are familiar but with some of the lyrics re-written to match their new relevance in this show. They have blended in the Beach Boys, Thriller, the Fights Song, Don’t Worry, Be Happy, some a little altered, for poetic license.

Anyone who has come to a CLD production, held every year in the theatre, will remember Colleen Curran who has been a part of and has starred in a long list of productions for many years. She loves to perform and sing. It is always Ms. Curran who knows all the parts of the production she is in. If anyone falters on stage, she just gently whispers the line.

Brianne Ellis has only been performing with the group for a short time – this is her second year with them. Dancing, though, has been a part of Ms. Ellis’ life for many years.

“I’ve been dancing for quite some time,” she told us. “I’ve been teaching myself with the just the music that I play – then, the dancing just comes to me.”

Ms. Ellis has been on stage dancing throughout her elementary and high school years. So, she is very happy to be performing with this group.Back on stage for this performance are Travis and Stephanie Grist, each playing lots of roles, including a couple bits where they are a couple. Some more familiar faces and new are Cody Black, Allan Boers, Matthew Deprinse, Monica Graeber, Jeff Horan, and Justine Stansbury.

This is Elizabeth Glenday’s sixth year directing the group in their annual production and her third writing the piece. Her original concept for this production was to do something Dickensian but eventually settled for moving somewhat ahead in time from Scrooge’s life to the 1920’s, hence the story featuring his great grand nephew.

“The cast had a large part in putting elements into the play,” she explained, listing character names, Zombies and ideas for the music. So, while the story found its beginning in her imagination, it is truly a collaborative creation.

Similarly, the whole production is a collaboration between CLD and Theatre Orangeville, for the set design and construction, lighting, technical supervision and stage management are handled by the theatre’s professional crew.

Said Ms. Glenday, “It’s wonderful for this cast to have the professionals [back stage] working with them. Doing the shows with this group every year – it’s my favourite thing.”

Scrooge on Vacation is running at Theatre Orangeville next week: Wednesday, March 9 at 11 a.m.; Thursday, March 10 and Friday, March 11 both in the evening at 7 p.m.

For tickets and information, call the Box Office at 519-942-3423 or go online to www.theatreorangeville.ca

By Constance Scrafield

         

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