‘A Christmas Carol’

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By Megan Romero

The Omaha Community Playhouse kicked off the holiday season right this November with its 36th annual production of “A Christmas Carol.”

Featuring more than 60 local children, teens and adults, “A Christmas Carol” was adapted for the stage by Charles Jones in a charming rendition that promises to be a good time for the whole family.

Set in London in December 1843, “A Christmas Carol” has captivated audiences of all ages by inviting them to join bitter, old Ebenezer Scrooge on his journey to learn the error of his ways. Scrooge, a wealthy miser, is visited by the ghost of his former business partner, Jacob Marley, and the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future.

The production exemplifies a traditional adaptation of Dickens’ classic, featuring such songs as “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” “O Come, O Come Immanuel,” “Away in a Manger” and many more. In addition to these classic carols, the detailed set designs and costumes seamlessly contribute to the authenticity of the production.

Jerry Longe is no newcomer to his role as Ebenezer Scrooge. Entering his sixth year playing this character, Longe immerses himself in this role. He engages the audience through his sincere portrayal and welcomes the audience to partake in both his sorrow and joy alike.

Kian Roblin stole the show with his innocently wholesome portrayal of Tim Cratchit. This was the child actor’s first show at the Omaha Community Playhouse, but if it’s up to the audience, this will not be his last. Upon hearing the line, “God bless us, every one!” the crowd’s immediate applause and hushed chatter filled the playhouse, combined with both smiles and quiet sniffles. As one audience member admitted, “Tiny Tim can still make me cry.”

From the music orchestrated by John Bennett to the talented actors directed by Carl Beck, Susan Baer Collins and Amy Lane, this production ensures to “pleasantly haunt your Yule Tide Season,” as described in the 2011/2012 production prompter.

“It’s a great way to start off the Christmas season. To continue a family tradition or begin one of your own, ‘A Christmas Carol’ fits the bill,” said a satisfied audience member.

As a newfound aficionada myself, I encourage you to “experience Omaha’s favorite holiday tradition as Ebenezer Scrooge takes us on a life-changing journey filled with beautiful costumes, exquisite music, extraordinary sets and special effects second to none,” as described in the production pamphlet.

The show runs from Nov. 18 to Dec. 23 with performances Wednesday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the OCP Box Office, by calling (402) 553-0800 or online at www.OmahaPlayhouse.org. Before Dec. 16, single tickets are $35 for adults and $24 for students. Dec. 16 to 23, single tickets are $39 for adults and $28 for students. Groups of 15 or more are $32 for adults and $18 for students.

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