The Old Courthouse Theatre Introduces A Broadway Christmas CarolNov 30, 2016 06:00AM ● By Melanie Heisinger
The Old Courthouse Theater (OCT) has been putting on shows since 1976, when the historic building was saved from demolition. Their upcoming show, A Broadway Christmas Carol, is OCT’s 210th production since its inception (including Old Courthouse Youth Theatre “OCYT” productions).
In celebration of their history, we got in touch with Mary Kathryn Ewart to get filled in about both the show, as well as what's new with Old Courthouse Theater.
Tell us about the upcoming show A Broadway Christmas Carol. What can we expect?
A Broadway Christmas Carol is not your typical retelling of the classic Charles Dicken’s tale. While the spoken dialogue stays true to the book, the show is interspersed with parodies of many popular Broadway showtunes, like “Tomorrow” from Annie and “Master of the House” from Les Miserable just to name a couple. The result is a hilarious and irreverent rendition of one of the world’s favorite Christmas stories.
In addition, all the characters are played by only three actors. This adds to the fun in watching them change quickly from role to role in both costumes and personality. Dancing, singing, laughter – it’s all there!
The show features Kim and Will Baysinger, Jason Huddle and is directed by John Stafford, who also provides the music from his on-stage piano. Stafford even gets to play a couple of roles himself through the course of the play. Mitzi Furr serves as the choreographer for the show and Lenore Young heads everything behind the scenes as stage manager.
What is the cast/director most excited about for this show?
OCT first did this show with this same cast five years ago. It was such a smash hit that many theater-goers asked for it to return. “Everyone was on board immediately to do it again,” said Huddle. “We had such a blast doing this show the first time, it was a no-brainer to recreate the magic. I can honestly say that I have been a part of many shows in my time and this one is, by far, my most favorite.” The comradery of the cast and crew is evident in rehearsals and, because of that, the team could come together to create a show that audiences will enjoy.
“This show is unique in that there is no written score nor stage direction in the script,” explained Stafford. “So everything the audience sees, from the set to the physical humor and the choreography – it’s all a conglomeration of all our own ideas coming to life on that stage, which seemed to work very well the last time around. And, this time, I think we’ve made the show even funnier, if that’s possible!” As far as what the cast is most excited about, they can’t wait to enjoy the audience’s reaction to this play that is so much fun to put on. “That makes all the rehearsals and late nights worth it,” said Huddle. “We’re here to give people a great show!”
How can someone get tickets?
You can purchase tickets by visiting www.showtix4u.com or calling the box office at 704-788-2405. During the last run many shows were at capacity so people are being advised not to delay purchasing their tickets. The show opens Dec. 1 and runs weekends through Dec. 18. Show times are at 8pm, except for Sunday matinees, which begin at 2:30pm.
Is there anything else we should know?
The show is PG. There is some very brief language (one curse word) and very mild sexual innuendos, but is generally considered a family-friendly show.
This show took many top OCT honors after its first run in the 2011-2012 season, including “Best Show”, “Best Actress” (Kim Baysinger) and “Best Director” (John Stafford), to name a few. You will regret missing this show!
Tell us a little about the theatre and what's new!
OCT is staffed and run by volunteers. It is regularly supported through the sale of season tickets, private donations, sponsors, individual ticket sales and lastly, by a Grassroots Grant through the Cabarrus Arts Council. The OCT receives no city or county money at this time, yet contributes to the community by donating tickets to other Cabarrus County non-profit organizations to aid in their fundraising.
The OCT name is well recognized and respected in the region and has been rightly earned by providing over 40 years of excellence. Launched as a result of one person’s dream, Old Courthouse Theatre carries its tradition as Cabarrus County’s only Community Theatre.
OCT is undergoing a major revitalization project that encompasses its facility, programming, and infrastructure. Projects like the roof/Stormwater drainage repairs, website/logo redesign, parking lot upgrades/repairs, and landscaping redesigns will be seen by everyone. Other projects such as cast dressing rooms remodel and set construction workshop expansion will be seen by OCT’s cast and technical crew members. Finally, projects such as business expense restructuring and implementing Standard Operating Procedures most likely will not be seen but definitely will be present.
The theatre's 42nd season is currently in the final stages of planning and will be announced this coming Spring!