Theater is Back - ISSUE SPECIAL

Cuenca Expats Magazine, Special Issue 
Photos: Teresa Drake

It’s that time of year again when movies, television specials and such look to the Christmas season in a countdown of animated dramas and live performances. We see Rudolph and Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas,” or choral arrangements blasting across our television screens almost non-stop.

However, there is one story that no one ever seems to get tired of hearing and that is Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” There’s no end to the variety of how this marvelous tale is told (including one by the Muppets), and the Azuay Community Theater is no exception. ACT chose “A Christmas Carol” to reintroduce itself to the community and as a way of saying “we’re back!” This particular rendition is being performed in the style of a 1940’s radio broadcast and will be complete with live sound effects. Anthony E.

Palermo made this adaptation of “A Christmas Carol” to be performed as a radio play. Viewers of the production become part of the radio audience and get to experience how radio productions during the 1940’s provided sound effects to stimulate visuals in the mind’s eye.

Director, Paula Bailey, does an unbelievable job in directing a dozen actors in their portrayal of over 30 characters as well as the three technicians on stage who provide all the sound effects: from the sound of the chimes of church bells, to people on the streets in 1843 England to the ghostly voices of the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come. When you close your eyes, you get the feeling that you are actually there and viewing Marley’s ghost dragging his chains across the floor. Ms. Bailey successfully transforms ACT from theater into a 1940’s radio studio. This performance is definitely a must see and an experience not to be missed.

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Come join in the celebration of the holiday season and take a step back into the past to a simpler time before social media, computers and the like. Sound effect technicians Laurie Jessup, Michael Phillips and Don Trammel do a wonderful job producing the sounds that help the listeners “see” the story. The cast, consisting of Joy Broomfield, Mark Deckard, Matt Flynn, Bob Fry, Cody Hamilton, Bob Hay, Martha Hooper, Linda Lewis, Ray Lewis, Dodie Lovett, Markku Sario and I, Terri Drake, provide the voices for all the characters.

Tickets are $15 and are available via PayPal, bank transfer or in-person purchases. For more details, contact maraganoact@gmail. com. Azuay Community Theater is located on Avenue Ordonez Lasso and is the first building west of Hotel Oro Verde. Performance dates are December 10, 11, 12, 17, 18 and 19 and start at 4 p.m.

Won’t you join me in taking a step back in time when one circled around the radio with a cup of hot chocolate or eggnog and tuned into a favorite program with family and friends.

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