Annual Holiday Favorite A CHRISTMAS CAROL Returns To South Coast Repertory

Some of the most-recognized phrases in the English language come from Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol: "Bah!, Humbug!" and "God bless us, everyone." South Coast Repertory's annual production of the Dickens classic returns for its 38th year; performances run Nov. 24-Dec. 24 on the Segerstrom Stage. Hal Landon Jr. returns as Scrooge and John-David Keller directs-both for their 38th consecutive year. Tickets are now on sale at scr.org.

Nineteenth-century London comes to life and recaptures for audiences the spirit of an old-fashioned Christmas with this timeless Dickens classic and all the favorite characters-Tiny Tim and the Cratchit family, the Fezziwigs, the Ghosts of Christmas past, present and yet-to-come-and everyone's favorite curmudgeon, Ebenezer Scrooge

This adaptation of A Christmas Carol, done by then-resident dramaturg Jerry Patch, debuted at SCR in December 1980 and the universal qualities that Patch brought to the play have kept the production timeless. He concentrated on how the major themes of the story could most effectively be communicated on the stage. The focus on humanity and regeneration continues to move audiences of all ages as they experience Scrooge's transformation along with the character.

"I wanted families to be able to come to the theatre together and share an experience," Patch said. "Everyone from grandparents to grandchildren could all be touched by the significant message of this classic story. I take great delight hearing families talking about what they've gotten out of the play."

Added Keller, who has directed the show for all of its 38 years: "A Christmas Carol is an important part of family holiday traditions. This production has been the first place where many audience members experienced theatre and we want to make sure that everyone continues to have the best time."

Sixteen students from SCR's Theatre Conservatory, chosen through audition, are featured in roles that range from the Cratchit family (including Tiny Tim) to children at an elegant evening ball.

The creative team includes Thomas Buderwitz, scenic design; Dwight Richard Odle, costume design; Donna and Tom Ruzika, lighting design; Dennis McCarthy, music arrangement and composer; Drew Dalzell, sound design; Dennis Castellano, vocal director; Hisa Takakuwa, assistant director; Joanne DeNaut, CSA, casting; Jackie S. Hill, production manager; and Talia Krispel, stage manager.

Landon is one of the longest-tenured Scrooges in the nation and has been recognized for his performances and longevity by The New York Times.

In addition to Landon, the cast includes Daniel Blinkoff, Gregg Daniel, Richard Doyle, Oliver Keane, John-David Keller, Alex Knox, Art Koustik, Timothy Landfield, Ann Marie Lee, Jeremiah Lussier, Sarah McGuire, William Francis McGuire, Jennifer Parsons, Erika Schindele, Sean Thomas Simmons and Amelia White.

A Christmas Carol is generously supported by Honorary Producers Julianne and George Argyros and the Argyros Family Foundation. The media sponsor is the Orange County Register.

Tickets: May be purchased online at scr.org, by phone at (714) 708-5555 or by visiting the box office at 655 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa. Performances run Nov. 24-Dec.24. Tickets start at $24 for children under the age of 12 and $29 for adults. Low-priced preview performances run Nov. 24-30. No children under the age of six will be admitted to see the show.

South Coast Repertory is located at 655 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa, at the Bristol Street/Avenue of the Arts exit off the San Diego (405) Freeway in the David Emmes/Martin Benson Theatre Center, part of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Parking is available on Park Center Drive, off
Anton Blvd.

Current and Upcoming Productions: August Wilson's Gem of the Ocean, through Nov. 11; Ella Enchanted: The Musical by Karen Zacarías and Deborah Wicks La Puma, Oct. 27-Nov. 12 (Theatre for Young Audiences); Sugar Plum Fairy by Sandra Tsing Loh, Dec. 3-24; Shakespeare in Love adapted by Lee Hall, Jan. 13-Feb. 10; Junie B. Jones by Allison Gregory, Jan. 26-Feb. 11 (Theatre for Young Audiences); Cambodian Rock Band by Lauren Yee, Mar. 4-25; SHREW! by Amy Freed, Mar. 24-Apr. 21; and Little Black Shadows by Kemp Powers, Apr. 8-29; the Pacific Playwrights Festival, and The Sisters Rosensweig by Wendy Wasserstein, May 5-June 2. Further information is available at scr.org.

ABOUT South Coast Repertory: Tony Award-winning South Coast Repertory, founded in 1964 by David Emmes and Martin Benson, is led by Artistic Director Marc Masterson and Managing Director Paula Tomei. SCR is widely recognized as one of the leading professional theatres in the United States. While its productions represent a balance of classic and modern theatre, SCR is renowned for its extensive new-play development program, which includes the nation's largest commissioning program for emerging and established writers. Of SCR's more than 500 productions, one-quarter have been world premieres. SCR-developed works have garnered two Pulitzer Prizes and eight Pulitzer nominations, several Obie Awards and scores of major new-play awards. Located in Costa Mesa, Calif., SCR is home to the 507-seat Segerstrom Stage, the 336-seat Julianne Argyros Stage and the 94-seat Nicholas Studio. scr.org.

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