FPAC Premieres CAROL'S CHRISTMAS This Weekend

FPAC Premieres CAROL'S CHRISTMAS This Weekend

Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) premieres a new holiday musical, Carol's Christmas, today, December 21, at 2:00 and 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, December 22, at 2:00 p.m. at the Thomas D. Mercer Auditorium, 224 Oak Street, in Franklin.

A contemporary musical comedy satirizing the material excesses which can threaten to derail the holiday season, Carol's Christmas follows one family's triumphs and travails as they wrestle with the question: What do they really want for Christmas? But they must decide if they have chosen their goals wisely. Rather than ask what they want this Christmas, they are better served to consider what they really need. Carol's Christmas features an entertaining and accessible score spotlighting music of many genres. Live musical accompaniment showcases members of the Kenny Hadley Big Band. Carol's Christmas invites audiences to ring in the holidays with a professional band and talented cast of area performers as they sing and dance their way through this joyous, uplifting and hilarious story.

"I really enjoy that the show is so modern," says Jenna McDermott, of Wrentham, who plays Marie. "Audiences will be able to relate it to their everyday lives."

Carol's Christmas was written for FPAC by Nick Paone, who most recently opened the company's 2013-2014 season as director and star (Jean Valjean) of LES MISERABLES. Paone also penned Humbug!, FPAC's musical adaptation of Dickens' A Christmas Carol, which debuted in 2008 and returned by popular demand the following year and the past two FPAC seasons.

Franklin's Hallie Wetzell, who portrays the musical's title character, credits Paone with providing an exciting creative opportunity for the cast to bring an original work to the stage. "It's not often as an actor you get to create a role," she notes. "Having a creative force like Nick Paone allows FPAC to offer this rare experience to its actors. Bringing a character to life with no previous performances to draw upon or inform our interpretation of the text challenges us and inspires us to bring everything we have to the table! It's an exciting and exhilarating ride for any actor!"

Performers cast in featured roles include Ali Funkhouser, Anna Grasso, Ed Jones, Wendy Jones, Teagan McStay, Chuck Peters, Guy Rezendes, Alicia Rivera, Kellie Stamp and Hallie Wetzell of Franklin; Colie Vancura of Medfield; and Jenna McDermott of Wrentham.

FPAC's holiday musical also showcases a large ensemble cast of 160 area performers from 21 towns. "One of my favorite things about performing in Carol's Christmas is working with a cast of all different ages," notes McDermott. "I love being able to see up close how the many different aspects of the production come together."

Carol's Christmas will be staged and directed by Nick Paone. FPAC Executive Director Raye Lynn Mercer will co-direct the production. The show will be conducted by Mariko Matsumura, with musical direction provided by Hallie Wetzell.

A distinctive suburban non-profit arts organization founded in 1991, FPAC brings together professional artists, community performers and students of the arts in a collaborative and creative environment. With a focus on youth development and a commitment to live music, productions draw performers and audiences from more than 50 communities throughout the region. Company performers and alumni are making their mark in top college and conservatory arts programs, national Broadway tours, European concert tours, the American Idol finals, cruise line casts, film, television and regional theater, reflecting the performance quality and entertainment value found in FPAC shows.

Tickets are $30, $28 and $26 for each show and may be purchased at The Spotlight Shop (34 Main Street, Franklin), through online ticketing at www.fpaconline.com, or by phone at 508-528-8668. Group sales are available for civic groups and organizations. FPAC 2013 Holiday Sponsors are Big Y and Middlesex Savings Bank.

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