Pittsburgh CLO Announces Cast for 28th Annual Production of A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL
Pittsburgh CLO announced casting for the 28th annual production of A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL, December 6-22 at the Byham Theater. This year's production will feature lavish costumes, thrilling effects and a talented ensemble of both new and returning performers. Broadway star Mark Jacoby returns to Pittsburgh CLO to lead the cast as Ebenezer Scrooge. Tickets are now available by calling 412-456-6666, online at pittsburghCLO.org or at the Theater Square Box Office.
Mark Jacoby (Ebenezer Scrooge) Broadway appearances include leading roles in Elf, Sweeney Todd, Man of La Mancha, Ragtime (Father), Show Boat (Gaylord Ravenal/Tony and Outer Critics nominations), The Phantom of the Opera (the Phantom), Grand Hotel and Sweet Charity (Theatre World Award). Elsewhere: Enter the Guardsman (Vineyard Theatre/Drama Desk nomination), Wicked (1st National tour), Fiddler on the Roof (Walnut Street Theatre/Barrymore Award) and 42nd Street (Walnut Street Theatre/Barrymore nomination). Recent T.V.: The Blacklist, Madam Secretary, The Good Fight and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Mark has been seen by Pittsburgh CLO audiences during a span of over 37 years in shows such as The Student Prince, Show Boat, The Mystery of Edwin Drood and as The Pirate King in three separate productions of The Pirates of Penzance.
ALLISON CAHILL (Mrs. Dilber, Mrs. Fezziwig) is returning to Pittsburgh CLO's A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL for a fifth season. She has performed internationally, with Pittsburgh Public Theater, West Virginia Public, Pittsburgh CLO, Pittsburgh Playhouse, St. Vincent College, off the WALL, KSMT and Terra Nova Theatre Company. Graduate of AADA (NYC) and AEA Member since 1990.
Ben Cherington (Young Scrooge, Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come) is a senior musical theatre major at Carnegie Mellon University and is making his Pittsburgh CLO debut. Recent credits: A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder and Jesus Christ Superstar at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre, Tiger at the Gates and Cabaret at Carnegie Mellon. Upcoming: Into the Woods (The Baker) at Carnegie Mellon.
Justin Fortunato (Fred, Businessman) is returning to A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL for his eighth year. Credits include: The Pittsburgh Public, PICT Theatre, The REP, Pittsburgh CLO, Primestage, St. Vincent Summer Theatre and Dream Catcher Theatre. He is the co-founder of Carnivale Theatrics, is currently the Producing Artistic Director of Lincoln Park Performing Arts Center and is a member of Actors' Equity Association.
Lisa Ann Goldsmith (Mrs. Cratchit) has recently been seen as Glinda Wicked Witch of the West and others in The Wizard of Oz (Bricolage) and Mrs. Staunton in The Speckled Band (Kinetic Theatre). Lisa Ann has appeared locally and regionally with such companies as Arkansas Rep, Primary Stages, Theatre by the Sea, Pittsburgh CLO, Pittsburgh Public Theater, Pittsburgh Irish and Classical and many others. She appears as Mary Travers (of Peter, Paul & Mary) in the upcoming feature film 116 Macdougal.
KATHERINE HARKINS (Martha Cratchit) is originally from Latrobe, PA and is making her Pittsburgh CLO debut. A recent graduate of Point Park University's BFA Acting program, you might have seen her on the old and new Pittsburgh Playhouse stages, or performing with companies like Split Stage Productions and Stage Right!
Tim Hartman (Charity Worker, Mr. Fezziwig, Ghost of Christmas Present, Businessman) Broadway: A Tale of Two Cities, Finian's Rainbow. Pittsburgh: The Man of La Mancha, Les Misérables, Into the Woods, Annie and The Sound of Music. Other favorites include Henry IV, Shadowlands, Camelot, Funny Girl, Disney's Beauty and the Beast and 24 characters in the one man show The Cotton Patch Gospel. Movies: The Silence of the Lambs, The Piano Lesson, The Mothman Prophecies, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh and The Fault in our Stars.
Lara Hayhurst (Ghost of Christmas Past, Charity Worker) Broadway credits: Lady Day... starring Audra McDonald. Off-Broadway: Do Re Mi. National Tour: Bye Bye Birdie (Kim). Previously with Pittsburgh CLO: Xanadu and Legally Blonde The Musical. Regional credits include Casa Mañana, Flat Rock, Sacramento Music Circus, Pittsburgh Public, Maine State, Fulton, Engeman and Paramount (Chicago). Next up: Maria in The Sound of Music with Pittsburgh Musical Theater. BFA Pace University.
Jeffrey Howell (Bob Cratchit) is returning for his 25th and final season as Bob Cratchit. Past Pittsburgh CLO shows include Rock of Ages, Titanic, Brigadoon, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Damn Yankees, Sunset Boulevard and Bells are Ringing. Other credits include Citizens Market, Forum, Souvenir, Choir Boy, The Light in the Piazza, Man of La Mancha, Lost Highway, Candide and Red Herring. Television: All My Children, The Young and the Restless. Films: The Cemetery Club and Sudden Death.
EMMETT KENT (Tiny Tim) is making his Pittsburgh CLO debut as Tiny Tim. Emmett joined the CLO Academy in 2018, and since has played the roles of the Dwarf and Baby Shrek in Shrek Jr. and Michael in Peter Pan Jr. He has also performed in The Music Man Jr. and the annual Taste for Talent. Emmett is a third grader at West Allegheny.
Daniel Krell (Marley's Ghost, Young Marley, Businessman) has appeared in over 35 productions with Pittsburgh CLO. He's played major roles with the region's professional theaters, such as Pittsburgh Public, City Theatre, and Quantum, as well as theaters around the country, including Clarence Brown Theatre, PlayMakers Repertory and Gateway Playhouse among others. Look for Dan as Mr. McFeeley in the Tom Hanks/Mr. Rogers film A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood.
ALEX MANALO (Fan, Alice) is a graduate of Point Park University returning for her second year in A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL. Alex has worked with several theater companies throughout the city. Some of her favorite credits include Bubbleboy (Chloe), Gul (Khuraki) and South Pacific (Liat).
J. ALEX NOBLE (Topper) is returning to A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL after previously appearing as a caroler and Topper in 2014. Most recently he played Sam Weinberg in A Few Good Men at the Pittsburgh Public Theater. He also originated the role of Jamison in the world premiere of The Double-Threat Trio at Pittsburgh CLO. Alex is a graduate of Point Park University, a native Pittsburgher and a member of Actors Equity since 2012.
BENJAMIN KENT PIMENTAL (Dick Wilkins, Peter Cratchit) is returning to A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL for the fourth time. Current BFA Musical Theater major at CCM. Favorite credits: The Wizard of Oz (Scarecrow), Disney's Newsies (Finch), The Secret Garden (Dickon) and 42nd Street (Featured Ensemble). Upcoming: Bright Star (Billy Cane).
ERIKA STRASBURG (Belle, Bess) is returning for her seventh year with A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL. A Carnegie Mellon Drama graduate, her other Pittsburgh CLO credits include: Peter Pan, Titanic, Up and Away, Pump Boys & Dinettes and Ring of Fire. This spring, catch Erika in the Pittsburgh Public's production of The Cake.
The cast is rounded out by a host of carolers and party guests.
ERIN LINDSEY KROM (Caroler) has appeared at Geva Theatre, Cape Playhouse, Everyman Theatre, Tuacahn Amphitheatre, Totem Pole Playhouse, NYMF, PICT, Front Porch Theatricals, Pittsburgh Public, The REP, Kinetic Theatre Co., Pittsburgh Playhouse and Playhouse on Park.
Billy Mason (Caroler) is returning to Pittsburgh CLO for his debut in A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL. Billy was previously seen at Pittsburgh CLO in The Toxic Avenger (black dude), In the Heights (Piragua), Mamma Mia! (Eddie) as well as Disney's Newsies, Aida and South Pacific.
Allan Snyder (Caroler) is returning for his fourth year in A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL. Pittsburgh credits include Pittsburgh CLO, Pittsburgh Public, off the WALL, Pittsburgh Musical Theater and Lincoln Park PAC. Broadway/Off-Broadway/Tour: Les Misérables, The Fantasticks and The Phantom of the Opera (title role). Next up: Oberon in A Midsummer Night's Dream at PICT Classic Theatre.
DREW LEIGH WILLIAMS (Caroler) recently closed Not Medea (Woman) at off the WALL. Previous Pittsburgh CLO productions: world premiere of The Double-Threat Trio (Nina), a role created during the inaugural SPARK festival with Beth Leavel, Xanadu (Melpomene) and Pump Boys & Dinettes (Rhetta). She's also been seen in Front Porch Theatricals' Fun Home (Alison), A New Brain (Lisa) and City Theatre's The Revolutionists (Marie Antoinette). MFA in Acting (CCPA), AEA member.
Several Pittsburgh CLO Academy students will also take part in the holiday production.
JOE CHUFO (Cratchit Child) is returning to A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL for the third time. Favorite roles include Willy Wonka in Willy Wonka Jr. and Harold Hill in The Music Man Jr. Joe studies at the Pittsburgh CLO Academy and is a 7th grade Theater major at Pittsburgh CAPA.
SYDNEY DeRIGGI (Cratchit Child) is making her Pittsburgh CLO debut. She is currently in 4th grade at East Catholic School and a student at CLO Academy. Sydney has performed in CLO Academy productions of Music Man Jr. and Seussical Jr.
DANIEL FRONTZ (Turkey Boy) is returning to A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL for the third time. Past roles include Michael in Peter Pan and Chip in Disney's Beauty and the Beast. He recently played John Bechdel in Front Porch Theatricals' Fun Home. Daniel is a theater major at Pittsburgh CAPA and also studies at CLO Academy.
RACHEL GRANT (Cratchit Child) is returning to A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL for the second time. Credits include Peter Pan Jr., Jungle Book Kids and Disney's The Little Mermaid. Rachel, a Trinity Christian School fifth-grader, studies at CLO Academy.
THE CREATIVE TEAM
DAVID H. BELL (Original Director / Choreographer / Adapter) has served as Artistic Director of the Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C. and Associate Artistic Director to Kenny Leon at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia and is currently the Artistic Director of the American Music Theatre Project and Director of the Music Theatre Program at Northwestern University. David initiated a program of co-productions between the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and Northwestern - collaborating on two original musicals that have joined NU students with RCS Masters Actors and presented at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for the last three years. David teaches classes in MT Techniques, Directing the Musical and Writing for MT.
Scott Evans (Director) has directed for the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center, Theatre Aspen, Forestburgh Playhouse, NYU, Northwestern, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and here at Pittsburgh CLO. Off-Broadway: Associate Director for Ten Chimneys and The Silver Cord. He has a 20-year history with this show, beginning as a cast member at Ford's Theatre and continuing to work with David H. Bell as an actor, associate director, director and creative producer of his works. Scott is Artistic Director of Somerled Arts and an Associate Artist with the American Music Theatre Project.
McCRAE HARDY (Music Director) returns for his 20+ season with A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL. 22 seasons as music director/conductor of The North Carolina Theatre, MD/arranger: Unto These Hills, The Lost Colony, Patsy (Branson, Toronto, National Tour) and many others. Guest conductor and arrangements for The North Carolina Symphony.
D Martyn Bookwalter (Scenic Designer) is returning for his 27th year with A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL with David Bell and the Pittsburgh CLO, having designed the original production. He has designed more than 500 productions for theaters across the country. Mr. Bookwalter was the Art Director of the Fox TV show MADtv, for which he received eight consecutive Emmy nominations. Other awards include the 2001 Angstrom Lighting Lifetime Achievement Award from the L.A. Drama Critics Circle, four Drama Critics Circle awards and a Sarah Siddons Award for Design Excellence.
Andrew David Ostrowski (Lighting Designer) National credits include The National High School Musical Theater Awards in NYC, The Asolo, Virginia Stage Company, North Shore Music Theatre, George Street Playhouse, TheatreWorks, Merrimack Repertory Company, The Arden, Spoleto Festival USA, Madison Opera and Dallas Summer Musicals. International credits in France, Sweden, Scotland and Ireland. Local credits include almost every company in Pittsburgh. His local designs total over 300 productions. This marks year 25 with the show.
Mariann Verheyen (Costume Designer) New York: NY Public Theater, Second Stage, Hudson Guild, Cathy Rigby's Peter Pan, 10 years commercial styling. Regionally: Alliance, Ford's, Huntington and Studio Arena, Missouri Repertory, Cincinnati Playhouse, plus Chicago, Alabama, Oregon and Colorado Shakespeare Theaters. Additionally, Disney World's Animal Kingdom, Disney and Viking Cruise Lines and Sea World. Design awards in New York City, Chicago, Boston, Atlanta and 2 Distinguished Achievement Awards. Head of Costume Design, Boston University College of Fine Arts, School of Theater.
A MUSICAL CHRISTMAS CAROL will be presented at the Byham Theater (6th & Fort Duquesne Boulevard) December 6-22. Tickets range from $33.00 - $62 with half-price tickets for children 3-14, and are now available by calling 412-456-6666, online at pittsburghCLO.org or at the Theater Square Box Office.