WOODSTOCK — For those who want to enjoy a Christmas play this holiday season, Elm Street Cultural Arts Center is offering two choices: “A Christmas Carol” and “The Little Drummer Boy.”
“Most community theaters produce one Christmas show annually and it’s a lot of fun — and a lot of work. Elm Street has been producing two or three Christmas shows every season for the last few years to make sure they offer something for everybody in the community,” said Artistic Director Gay Lora Grooms.
For those who can’t decide which show they’d like to see the most, they can attend one show and return to see the other for half price, cash only at the door.
“A few years back, we started adding a short Christmas themed production more suitable for very young children than ‘A Christmas Carol.’ This year we are staging ‘The Little Drummer Boy,’” Grooms said.
“The Little Drummer Boy” is directed by Siobhan Brumbelow and will be presented on Sundays at 2 p.m. on Dec. 8, 15 and 22. Tickets are $10 general admission for ages 2 and older.
Jacob Adams plays the title role as Daniel, a boy who receives a handmade drum for a birthday present just before the family leaves the village to pay their taxes in Bethlehem. His parents are played by Josh Hill and Valentine Williamson with Grace Johnson as his friend, Sarah. Mary and Joseph are played by Samantha Estep and Sean Nesmith, with Barry Reel, Brett Leverette and Zachary Blauser as the Wisemen.
In Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” Ebenezer Scrooge learns the true meaning of Christmas with the help of four ghostly spirits.
“This vivid adaptation with original music and traditional carols has been a Cherokee County tradition since 2002,” Grooms said.
Jeremy Cain is featured as Scrooge, along with Brad Leak and Carlye McLaughlin as Bob and Mrs. Cratchit, Cary Fricke Jr. and Casey Hofmann as Fred and Alice, Tony Vastola as Jacob Marley, Kristina Welch as Ghost of Christmas Past, Gray Plunkett as Ghost of Christmas Present and Brendan Fagan as Tiny Tim.
Musical direction is by Amy Noel Welch, staging by Grooms, who also wrote the libretto and original songs. Costumes, sets and props have been created by Julie Sokol, Cindy, Jim and Britt Flanders, Brumbelow, Elaine Sanders and Kaitlyn Pierce.
“There are five performances of ‘A Christmas Carol’ in December, but we’ve learned that seeing this great story on Christmas Eve is a delightful family experience that many of our patrons return for year after year,” Grooms said.
There will be a free performance of “A Christmas Carol” as a thank you to the community on Dec. 14 at 2 p.m. with canned goods to donate to Papa’s Pantry accepted as admission.
Additional shows are Dec. 20, 21 and 23 at 7:30 p.m. and Dec. 24 at 2 p.m.
Tickets are $12 for adults, $11 for seniors/students and $10 for children 3 to 12 in advance online, including sales tax/fees. Tickets $15, $13 and 12 respectively at the door.
City Center Stage holds a few hundred people, so there are always seats available, Grooms said.
Both shows will be at City Center Stage, 8534 Main St. in Woodstock, the old Woodstock Community Church building.