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Cumberlands Theatre presents


Russell Ridenour will play the role of Scrooge in University of the Cumberlands production of “A Christmas Carol" opening November 5 at 7:30 p.m. in the Kohn Theatre on campus. Photo by Moe Conn, Instructor and Technical Director of Theatre Arts

WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. - University of the Cumberlands Theatre Arts program announces the opening of the fall show "A Christmas Carol: A Ghost Story of Christmas" on Thursday, November 5 in the Kohn Theatre of the Grace Crum Rollins Fine Arts Center on campus. Charles Dickens' well-known tale will be brought to life with a 28-person cast from the campus and community.

The role of Ebenezer Scrooge is performed by UC senior Russell Ridenour. "Russell has great emotional versatility," says Kim Miller, Assistant Professor of Theatre Arts and "Carol" director. "The character of Scrooge is known for being stingy and cold, but the actor playing him also has to be giddy, child-like in his fear, his wonder, and his gratitude by the end of the story. Russell makes these transitions seem effortless, and he adds a great physicality to the character as well." Ridenour's work is excellently supported by fellow UC senior Spencer Hall in the role of the fettered ghost of Jacob Marley.

Williamsburg resident Justin Brown plays opposite Ridenour as the faithful but impoverished Bob Cratchit, who with Mrs. Cratchit, played by Cheri Reed, and their children, played by Kara Watkins, Wyatt Begley, Abby Schwarz, and Elijah Harrington, exemplifies the spirit of Christmas and of caring for one another. Even with a cast of 28, many of the actors are double and triple cast to portray Scrooge's past, present and future.

"The play is spooky, but family-friendly," says Miller. Set and special effect designs by Moe Conn establish the play as straddling the worlds between Halloween and Christmas. When asked about the set and special effects, Miller just said, "You'll have to come and see them to believe them." She did add that 4 special black lights had been purchased for the show and the technical crew worked hard to create 1850's London on stage. Costumes and masks by Alice Neff and choreography by Lindsay Baker, owner of The Dance Centre of Williamsburg, put the finishing touches on the other-worldly nature of the play.

'A Christmas Carol: A Ghost Story of Christmas' opens Thursday, November 5 at 7:30 p.m. It will continue with performances on November 6, 7, 12, 13 and 14 at 7:30 p.m. There will be two Sunday matinees, November 8 and 15, both beginning at 2 p.m. The performances will be in the Kohn Theatre of the Grace Crum Rollins Fine Arts Center on campus. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students; UC students can attend for free. For reservations, please call the box office at 539-4535.