Friday, October 30, 2009

The Approaching Holidays

I have some theatre plans, and things to ponder as well, for the upcoming Christmas Season.

To begin with, I have committed to a reading of "A Christmas Carol" at the Full Circle Theater Company. By reading of course I mean it will be more like a recital. It will be for the audience as though a story or book where being read to them, except with several people reading different parts. In fact, the script that will be used for this two weekend Christmas event is the adaptation that Charles Dickens himself drew up based on his novel.

In the wake of A Christmas Carol's wild popularity, Dickens was often called upon to read the piece to large gatherings, in both Europe and North America. To make the piece more palatable, (not to mention the evening shorter), Dickens adapted his novel to script form. It is obviously abridged, but nonetheless take about an hour to perform. At least there can be little argument that the author would be pleased with the adaptation!

I participated in a reading of this very script, under the very same director, 6 years ago, as part of a Christmas celebration. That was a one night only affair, while this will be two weekends, and will include music and other festivities. I look forward to it, despite it being a reading. This tale is this tale, and few things bring the holidays more into focus than taking part in any telling of this story. (Those who follow the blog know that just last year, I was in a full fledged production of A Christmas Carol, which was Full Circle's inaugural production in their new building.)

Yet there is more to my holiday oriented staged reading plans. Perhaps.

The Winchester Little Theater, for whom last year I appeared in a staged reading, will be holding auditions for a live radio play version of "It's a Wonderful Life."

Every year this theater puts on this Christmas reading. It is a reading, like others I have described, but with something extra. It is staged like the old classic radio plays from the golden age of radio. Complete with a sound effects guy on stage. Last year, they managed to get the thing broadcast live on real local radio, and this year will be doing so again. I am giving very serious consideration to auditioning for this experience.

I like most aspects of the Winchester Little Theater, despite being treated poorly there, one time. Yet the drive for me is an hour an ten minutes, and it is not a pleasant drive for me. After my last experience, I decided that I wouldn't make Winchester a very regular destination, but would consider it again if something about a production really spoke to me. I am a fan of the venue itself, and have been hoping for a chance to perform there again someday.

That is the case with this. I am not a huge fan of "It's a Wonderful Life", (sacrilege to some of you, I know.) But I do know the director, and am intrigued by the possibility of performing live on radio. (I have been a radio personality before and loved it.) Plus it is a reading, so fewer rehearsals are required, and hence less travel. So I do believe this would be a good time to give the WLT another chance.

If I do try out, and get in, it will go on one week after the Christmas Carol reading finishes. It would also mean that I would have to schedule rehearsals for one around the other. Normally I would not do this, but given that both are readings, I feel comfortable with the possibility. And taking part in not one, but two well known Christmas tales would make for a very festive Christmas season for me. The holidays aren't worth much if one is not around people, after all.

Keep checking back to see what I decide to do about the WLT. But at this point, believe me, I am leaning heavily towards going for it.

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