By Mikaela STONE
It is time to again embrace holiday cheer and hurry to the Highlands Church production of “A Christmas Carol” lest one be visited by three ghosts on Christmas Eve!
Local resident and director Carter Thomas returns to the Highlands Church stage after a successful summer production of “The Sound of Music.” Thomas boasts a relationship with “A Christmas Carol” that spans 20 years, starting when he played Tiny Tim as a tot. Glendale Center Theatre’s most famous running show was its yearly production of “A Christmas Carol,” which allowed Thomas to “delve deeply into the timeless tale.”
Several of the 25 actors performing in this production have likewise been involved in The Glendale Center Theatre. The community of cast and crew that make the production a holiday tradition have the unique talent of making a well known story feel fresh; this year Thomas promises a rustic aesthetic with a pop of color via more modern color-changing set pieces. Though artistic in his adaptation, Thomas is careful to honor Charles Dickens’ original intent and it is Thomas’ desire that the audience members connect with each of Dickens’ many characters.
While Charles Dickens was paid by the word, often resulting in denser, more repetitive prose, Thomas has the freedom to portray a paragraph’s worth of description in the visuals he directs. These staging choices allow the modern viewer to appreciate the foundation of Dickens’ story while still appreciating the author’s rich imagery as conveyed through set, props and costumes. Thomas said that this year he has pushed himself to take a deeper look at the story than ever before “and create the best production [he is] able to.”
He also noted the talent of his “spectacular actors… [I] can’t wait for the audience to see them!”
Given the rich history among those involved with the production of “A Christmas Carol” the community would do well to see how Thomas and his veteran cast outdo themselves this year.
The production will be running Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from Dec. 8 to Dec. 16. The show will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Sundays, with Saturday matinees beginning at 2:30 p.m. The show will have tasty treats available at intermission from the pop up sweet shop Shared Piece of Cake.
Highlands Church is located at 4441 La Crescenta Ave.