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BWW Review: A CHRISTMAS CAROL at Omaha Community Playhouse

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"This timeless story of love, acceptance and redemption feels new every year, even if the lines have stayed the same."

BWW Review: A CHRISTMAS CAROL at Omaha Community Playhouse

It's Christmas Day at last! Or at least it sure feels like it after my recent visit to the Omaha Community Playhouse where they are back in action with their current showing of their beloved production of A Christmas Carol, written by Charles Dickens and adapted by Charles Jones. Omaha audiences flock to the Omaha Community Playhouse year after year to enjoy this production, which has become the heart of the theater family at OCP and a tradition for many in the Omaha area. This timeless story of love, acceptance and redemption feels new every year, even if the lines have stayed the same, which can be attributed to the care each director has taken throughout the years to maintain the integrity of the production and it's place in the Omaha community.

Director Susie Baer Collins has assembled a lovely cast of performers to help tell this story loved by many. This cast of talented performers is full of both new faces and returning favorites, with wonderful performances on both sides of the spectrum.

Leading the way for the veterans is Jerry Longe, who has been an Omaha favorite and the resident Scrooge for sixteen years and never seems to miss a beat. His humorous and heartfelt performance is the backbone of the Omaha production, and I look forward to his portrayal of Scrooge every year. Another longtime member of the A Christmas Carol family, Julie Huff, makes her return to the Omaha stage as The Ghost of Christmas Past (and others). After a short break in her twenty-two year run in A Christmas Carol, she is back and making audiences giggle and reminisce nightly as she helps to kick things off during Scrooges night of revelation and redemption. Her warm laugh upon entering the stage as The Ghost of Christmas Past feels like a welcoming hug, and her cackle and thick cockney accent as Myrtle Crow are such a stark contract that you forget it's the same performer.

Standout performances by the newest additions to the A Christmas Carol family at the Omaha Community Playhouse are turned out by Seth Maisel and Emma Powell, who play Jake and Martha Cratchit respectively. While Maisel and Powell are no strangers to the Omaha Community Playhouse stage, this marks their debut performance in this holiday classic. Maisel, after making an impressive Omaha Community Playhouse debut starring in the recent production of Murder on the Orient Express, is simply delightful as Jake. He brings a sincerity and hopefulness to Jake that is refreshing and honest, and he is someone I will be watching out for in the Omaha theatre community moving forward. Powell brought a maturity to Martha Cratchit that I haven't experienced in recent memory. Her performance is grounded and a welcome addition to the legacy of this production.

If you haven't booked your tickets yet, I highly suggest you buy them soon as this run is sure to sell out before the end. If you find yourself looking for something to do with the whole family, head on down to the Omaha Community Playhouse and spend some time with Scrooge, some wonderful carolers, and maybe even a ghost or three. For tickets, please visit the Omaha Community Playhouse box office, call 402-553-0800, or visit https://ticketomaha.com/Productions/a-christmas-carol_2021.


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From This Author Analisa Swerczek