Trinity Rep has announced the dates and details for the production of its annual holiday tradition, A Christmas Carol. Noted for being a new production each year, the 2018 production has been inspired by a traditional telling of the famed Dickens classic.
This year the production will be directed Mark Valdez, who directed Fuente Ovejuna, or Like Sheep to Water at Trinity Rep in 2017. Beloved acting company member and one of last year’s co-directors, Stephen Thorne, will be playing the role of Ebenezer Scrooge. The production will also feature community choirs in each performance. All shows will feature a different choir from the Rhode Island area, performing traditional holiday songs. A Christmas Carol runs November 8 through December 30, with press opening on Tuesday, November 3 at 7:30 pm. Among the ten most-attended productions of A Christmas Carol in America each year, Trinity Rep’s production has become a southern New England tradition, serving over 1.5 million people since its inception four decades ago. Last year’s production was the highest-selling show in Trinity Rep’s history, and this year’s tickets are already out-selling last year. More show details are online at TrinityRep.com/carol. Tickets start at $25 and are available online or by contacting the box office at (401) 351-4242.
Resident Acting Company member Stephen Thorne returns to A Christmas Carol this year after co-directing it in 2017 with fellow company member, Angela Brazil. He says, “I was thrilled this year when Artistic Director Curt Columbus asked me to play Scrooge. Scrooge is a fantastic part with a beautiful journey. I have had the great privilege of watching so many actors in our company play this part – all of them so very different from each other. It is my hope that I will make a good contribution to that substantial history.” Director Mark Valdez plans to focus on tradition and fun in this year’s production. He says, “This is my chance to be a part of this legacy and tradition in theater and it has meaning for a lot of people. I want to be a part of that.”
In addition, echoing the idea of tradition that director Mark Valdez has spoken on, Stephen continues, saying, “This show is a tradition for many Rhode Islanders. There are so many families that come. And there are so many parents who came as kids to Project Discovery shows that now bring their kids! It is rather profound that people continue to gather together to hear this story. Yes, it is entertaining and fun, but there are essential human experiences that are explored – our relationship to the past, the possibility of change, the necessity of community – all of this is a part of A Christmas Carol. There is a reason why, to quote a number of our company members, ‘it has stood the test of time.’ This story speaks to young and old, and everyone in between.”
With this production, Mark Valdez was inspired to bring Rhode Islanders together. “This show means something to the state,” says Mark, “and it’s such a beautiful thing to me.” To do this, Trinity Rep has invited choirs from around the Rhode Island area to be a part of this year’s production. There will be a total of 56 performances with individual choirs.
The choirs included are: Barrington High School Select Chorus, Beneficent Church and Friends, Chorus of East Providence, Chorus of Kent County, Collegium Ancora , Do Music! Community Choir, Gordon School, Grace Church Choir, Greater Tiverton Community Chorus, Jamestown Community Chorus, Kol Pacem: Voices of Peace Lively Experiment at University of Rhode Island, Middletown High School Chorus, Mount Hope High School Chorus, Newport Navy Choristers, North Kingstown Community Chorus, Portsmouth Abbey, Providence Gay Men’s Chorus, Providence Singers, Rising Stars RI Music and Theater Group, Riverside Side Middle School, Rocky Hill School, RPM Voices, Saint Francis De Sales , Salve Regina University Madrigals Chorus, Scandinavian Women’s Chorus of RI, Segue Institute for Learning, Sharon Community Chorus, Sine Nomine, Swanhurst Chorus Inc, The Professional Choristers of The Choir School of Newport County and the Adult Choir of The Zabriskie Memorial Church of Saint John the Evangelist, Newport, RI, West Warwick High School Concert Chorale and
Founding Artistic Director Adrian Hall first added A Christmas Carol to Trinity Rep’s lineup in 1977, just four years after moving into the company’s current home at the Lederer Theater Center on Washington Street. Since then the production has been a holiday staple for generations of families in Southern New England. Trinity Rep’s production is set apart from other holiday productions by the fact that it is re-imagined every year by a new
director, cast, and set of designers.
Cast and Creative Team
Director Mark Valdez will be working alongside Esther Zabinksi (music director), and yon Tande (choreographer). They are joined on the creative team by Michael McGarty (set design), Gary Lennon (costume design), Karin Olson (lighting design), and Peter Sasha Hurowitz (sound design.) In addition to Stephen Thorne, Resident Acting Company members Timothy Crowe, Fred Sullivan, Jr., Daniel Duque-Estrada, and Mauro Hantman will take on various roles in the production. They will be joined by third-year students in the Brown/Trinity Rep MFA Acting program, local performers, and a children’s cast comprised of young local actors.
Other Community Partnerships
A Christmas Carol at Trinity Rep is presented by Cardi’s Furniture and Mattresses with supporting sponsors Amica Insurance. The Media Sponsor for this production is iHeart Radio’s stations B101 and Coast 93.3. Trinity Rep will continue to partner with the Rhode Island Community Food Bank throughout the run of the show. Since 2006, the cast of A Christmas Carol has raised money following the performances, and the audience has responded generously, giving over $465,000 to the Food Bank over the years. This year’s production is dedicated to Stephen Hamblett and his love for the story of A Christmas Carol.
Continuing Trinity Rep’s tradition of offering affordable tickets for all, the theater will have discounted previews of A Christmas Carol. Thursday, November 8 is a Pay What You Can performance. Pay What You Can tickets go
on sale at 6:30 pm that evening, and are limited to one per person.
Other special performances for this production include an Open Captioned performance for the show on November 11 at 12:00 pm. There will be a Sensory Friendly Plus! performance on November 17 at 12:00 pm designed to meet the needs of children and adults on the autism spectrum, or with sensory processing disorders. This performance features modified sound, lighting, and other adjustments. There will also be a Lunch and Learn on November 16 at 12:00 pm where members of the public are invited to bring their lunches and see behind-the-scenes sneak peeks of the set and other aspects of production.
Trinity Repertory Company
Rhode Island’s Tony Award-winning theater, Trinity Rep has created unparalleled professional theater for and with its community since its founding in 1963. Trinity Rep strives to facilitate human connection and has been a
driving force behind the creativity that fuels and defines the region for more than 50 years.
Trinity Rep is committed to reinventing the public square and inspiring dialogue by creating emotionally stimulating live productions that range from classical to contemporary and innovative education programs for all ages and abilities. Its annual production of A Christmas Carol has brought families together for 41 years and made memories for over a million audience members. Subscriptions for the 2018-19 Season are now on sale. The season includes Pride & Prejudice by Kate Hamill, black odyssey by Marcus Gardley, a special limited-engagement of An Iliad by Lisa Peterson and Denis O’Hare, Macbeth by William Shakespeare, The Song of Summer by Lauren Yee, Little Shop of Horrors with book and lyrics by Howard Ashman and music by Alan Menken, and José Rivera’s Marisol.
For more information on our 2018-19 Season, call the box office at (401) 351-4242 or visit Trinity Rep’s website at www.TrinityRep.com.