Seacoast Rep Presents A CHRISTMAS CAROL

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This year's holiday season in Portsmouth will feature Charles Dickens with a dash of Disney as the Seacoast Repertory Theater presents the Broadway musical adaptation of "A Christmas Carol."

The musical, which opens Friday Nov. 29, will put the Seacoast Rep's own brand of razzle-dazzle on a show rich in Broadway spectacle and the seasonal message of Dickens's beloved story.

"Everything is larger than life. You can tell when you look at the script," said director Alyssa Dumas.

"We're just giving this such a special treatment -- our end-of-the-year stamp on 2019. We're just going to make it as big as we can, and hopefully people enjoy it," she said.

A highlight is the music by Alan Menken, the award-winning composer of Walt Disney scores for movies including "The Little Mermaid," "Beauty and the Beast," "Aladdin" and "Pocahontas."

"The music in it is great," Dumas said. "And were going to have lots of fun surprises. "When they happen it'll certainly have an effect."

The musical ran yearly at the Paramount Theater in New York's Madison Square Garden from 1994 to 2003, and it was adapted as a Hallmark movie in 2004.

The show, Dumas said, strikes a balance between the rosy uplift of some productions and the brooding elements of others, as Ebenezer Scrooge transforms from a mean-spirited miser to a joyful embodiment of the Christmas message.

"There's so many different versions of Christmas Carol. Some are really dark. Some are really happy and light. This version in particular has a good mix of both," she said.

Kevin Mahaney will be playing the role of Scrooge. He was recently named as a resident artist in the Seacoast Rep's program to develop promising talent and revive its roots as a theater company. Dumas is directing her second production - after The Wedding Singer - as a resident artist. Another resident artist, Jason Faria, is choreographing the show.

The Seacoast Rep brought in a Broadway veteran to design the costumes, and the Rep's own Mad Men of Oopsy Daisy Inc - Ben Hart and Brandon James - designed the sets, with a giant Big Ben style clock looming over the show.

Unlike some performance companies which stage versions of classics such as A Christmas Carol or The Nutcracker as an annual tradition, the Seacoast Rep stages different shows each holiday season.

"I think it's there's something to switching it up every year and just bringing different takes to the stories that you know and love," Dumas said. She predicted audiences would love the Seacoast Rep's production of "A Christmas Carol."

"This show is so grand and so heartwarming. Everybody has a story, and I think sometimes holidays are really hard for people. This story in particular shows you why that is for some people," Dumas said.

"People's stories make them who they are and sometimes people need a reminder of that, so I think people are really going to be able to connect to this and feel really good." A Christmas Carol is proudly sponsored by Port City Makerspace and The River House. The Seacoast Rep's 2019 Mainstage Season is sponsored by Bondgarden Farm, MacEdge, The Portsmouth Sheraton Harborside Hotel, Key HVAC, and Martingale Wharf.

A Christmas Carol runs November 29-December 22. Show times are generally Thursdays at 7:30, Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 2 pm and 8 pm, and Sundays at 2 pm. There is a preview matinee on Friday, November 29 at 2 pm, and an added Wednesday performance on Dec. 18 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are available through the Seacoast Rep box office at 603-433-4472, or online at Seacoastrep.org/tickets. For student discounts, call the box office. The Seacoast Repertory Theatre's 2019 season is sponsored in part by Bondgarden Farms, Martingale Wharf, MacEdge, the Sheraton Portsmouth Harborside Hotel and Key Heating and Air Conditioning.

The Seacoast Repertory Theatre is a 501(c)3 non-profit theatre committed to providing a variety of programming for the community. The Rep presents professional programming through its Mainstage, alternative programming through its Red Light Series and also offers a variety of programs for youth and seniors. For more information, or to schedule an interview, please call Director of Marketing Brian Kelly at 603-785-2782 or at marketing@seacoastrep.org. For artistic questions please contact Artistic Directors Ben Hart and Brandon James at artisticdirector@seacoastrep.org.



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