From The Broadsheet Daily, December 9, 2010
An Updated ‘Christmas Carol’ Sets the Pace for Holiday Giving
Ebenezer Scrooge would be furious if he knew what the cast of the newly reimagined production of A Christmas Carol are up to: Not only did they assist in the community tree lighting at the South Street Seaport on November 26 (“Bah!”), and not only are they staging his whole sordid story at Pace University’s Schimmel Center for the Arts on December 8 through 12 (“Humbug!”), but — and here’s the part that would really make him want to hide Tiny Tim’s crutches — they are planning to raise money for charity after each performance.
The cast (including two BPC residents: Grace Diana Kirwin, in second grade at P.S. 89, and her sister Brooke Kelly Kirwin, in fifth) will mingle with the audience and collect contributions for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids. The production, mounted by Pace’s Department of Performing Arts, features original music, newly choreographed dance numbers, larger-than-life puppets, and a generous dose of Christmas spirit. One more thing about the show that Scrooge would hate: Tickets are affordably priced, at $12 for adults and $8 for students, seniors, and kids.
The curtain goes up Wednesday through Friday at 8:00 pm, on Saturday at 2:00 and 8:00 pm, and on Sunday at 1:00 and 7:00 pm. Tickets are available at the box office (One Spruce Street) before each performance, and can be reserved by e-mailing Theater@Pace.edu or calling 212-346-1954.
An adaptation by Grant Kretchik of Charles Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol” with puppets, dance and music is the talk of the town.
The production appeared TWICE during the week of December 8 in The New York Times – The Community Affairs Calendar and Seasonal Revels (Arts). It also got a “double play” on BroadwayWorld.com – “Pace University & The Dept of Performing Arts Presents A CHRISTMAS CAROL” and “Pace University Confronts the AIDS Crisis With BC/EFA.”
Time Out New York featured the actors/carolers/dancers participation in the South Street Seaport Tree Lighting event, as well as recommended the play in their separate Time Out New York KIDS edition. TheaterMania came out with the most comprehensive play information, naming every person in the cast/crew AND their role … along with featuring the show entirely in the lead paragraph of the article, “Kids Spotlight: Carol Channeling,” which was also picked up by USA Today among others.
Single mentions (many with photos) included the NY Daily News, Stamford Advocate, Greenwich Time, New York Social Diary, WNBC-TV, NY1, NYC.com, Shecky’s NYC Nightlife, The Broadsheet Daily, Downtown Alliance, DGuides, Tribeca Tribune, NYTheatre.com, Mommy Poppins, PARENTGUIDE News, A Child Grows in Brooklyn and PeaTot.
The Seaport Inn promoted Pace’s “A Christmas Carol” on their website, noting to tourists that the Schimmel Theater was ” Walking distance from our front door.”
Student actors were featured in their hometown newspapers: Niko Papastefanou (Scrooge) from Montgomery, NY near the Hudson River Valley and Catskill Mountains was profiled in the Times-Herald Record; Chris Barba (Fred, Scrooge’s nephew) who hails from a seacoast town in Plymouth County, MA was interviewed by the Scituate Mariner; Chris Fayne (Bob Cratchit) from Egg Head Township in NJ was named a “person of the week” by Shore News Today; and Daniel Rings (Gentleman, Clerk and Caroler) was applauded by Michigan’s Midland Daily News in the article, “Midland Actor Takes Stage in New York.” The Times-Herald Record and Midland Daily News also ran the cast photo.
Grant Kretchik, who directed the adaptation of “A Christmas Carol,” spoke about the production in interviews with the New York Observer’s supplement, The Educated Observer, as well as his own Hawley, PA, hometown newspaper, The News Eagle.
Additionally buzz was provided by the South Street Seaport’s full page ad promoting the message “Spend Your Holidays at the Seaport” and highlighting “Pace University’s ‘A Christmas Carol’ appearance at the Tree Lighting Spectacular on November 26. The ad appeared on the back page of AM New York, The Downtown Express and other local newspapers.
Now that your Thanksgiving meal has been digested and discarded, let the holidays begin in earnest. The Seaport Chorus Tree Lighting (South Street Seaport, Pier 17, Fulton St at Water St; 212-732-7678, southstreetseaport.com; 6pm; free) is the first of the season, so head down to the cobbled streets and see the Big Apple Chorus break out holiday tunes. Jill Martin is the host for the evening and introduces excerpts from A Christmas Carol, performed by the Pace University Department of Performing Arts, and singer Darlene Love who stirs up some cheer with “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home).”
The Seaport Chorus Tree Lighting – featuring excerpts from “A Christmas Carol” performed by Pace’s Department of Performing Arts – was named a “Your perfect Friday, November 26” selection by the editors of Time Out New York – http://newyork.timeout.com/things-to-do/this-week-in-new-york/282663/your-perfect-friday-november-26#ixzz16iPZFXs1
If you missed the live performance, don’t despair. These YouTube videos are the next best thing to being there!
The most famous holiday story ever told is alive at Pace University, filled with choreography by Rhonda Miller, music by Scott O’Brien and many surprises. The production is as vibrant as it is haunting in this new adaptation by Grant Kretchik. Adults and children alike are sure to find something fresh in this inventive and festive holiday production, on top of being an affordable way to celebrate the holiday season in New York City.
Pace University and the Department of Performing Arts take you on a fantastical journey with the timeless holiday classic A Christmas Carol, based on the novel by Charles Dickens.
Enter the world of Ebenezer Scrooge as he is confronted by larger than life puppets who teach him the value of the holiday spirit and the importance of family and kindness to others – http://t.co/w8YPts7
December 8-12, 2010
Performance Schedule: Wednesday-Saturday at 8PM; Saturday at 2:00PM; Sunday at 1:00PM and 7:00PM
Location: Schimmel Center for the Arts at Pace University, New York City Campus east of City Hall in Lower Manhattan (entrance on Spruce Street)
Tickets: Students/Seniors $8 Adults $12, General Admission Seating
Reservations: email firstname.lastname@example.org