Christmas cheer is lighting up local stages as theaters offer contemporary and classic shows to put audiences in a holiday mood. P.S. Center Stage Players in Wyandotte takes on the humorous side of the holidays with “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” while the Bonstelle offers its annual production of the Dickens classic “A Christmas Carol.”
Next week’s column will feature the Downriver Actors Guild in Wyandotte December presentation of the family friendly musical “Annie,” which offers “A New Deal for Christmas.”
P.S. CENTER STAGE PLAYERS OFFERS ‘THE BEST CHRISTMAS PAGEANT EVER’
P.S. Center Stage Players take on a play-within-a-play in “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” which runs 7 p.m. Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, 7 and 8 at the Jo Brighton Auditorium, 4460 18th St., Wyandotte.
When a seasoned pageant director “breaks a leg” literally, a naive neophyte takes over. When the neighborhood delinquents inadvertently end up in the show, the play takes on a fresh and unexpectedly entertaining perspective.
Directed by Penny Lynn Siler, the cast includes Rose Kilburn of Wyandotte as Beth Bradley, Dinah Tutein of Rockwood as Mrs. Armstrong, Amber Kittle-Selburg of Flat Rock as Grace and, as the Herdman siblings, Harmony Bedikian, Dexter Kmet and Brett Massey of Wyandotte, Sheldon Hall of Southgate, Aubrey Diebold of Riverview and Isabella Selburg of Flat Rock.
The ensemble includes Meghan Perkins of Allen Park, Shyoma Kelly of Flat Rock, MaryKate Lassiter of Newport, Molly Pelkey of Riverview, Charlotte and Easton Hall and Brianna Bumgardner of Southgate and Charlene Bauer of Woodhaven.
Also in the cast are Wyandotte residents Alex Barr; Adam and Kathy Bedikian; Ryleigh Farrell; Bryce Johnston; Jamie and Kim Kilburn; Julia and Landon Petrowski; Aaron A., Aaron M., Lily and Maggie Wilson; and Rosemary Zehel.
Tickets are $12, with a $2 discount for seniors and a $4 discount for students. For more information, call 734-771-0590 or visit the Facebook page.
WSU HAUNTS STAGE WITH SEASONAL SPIRITS IN ‘A CHRISTMAS CAROL’
The ghosts of Christmas past, present and beyond haunt the Bonstelle stage as Wayne State University presents the Dickens classic “A Christmas Carol” Dec. 1 to 17 at the theater, 3424 Woodward, Detroit.
The show runs 7 p.m. Dec. 1, 2, 7 to 9, 15 and 16, 2 p.m. Dec. 2, 6, 9 and 16 and 3 p.m. Dec. 16, and features graduate and undergraduate actors and a youth ensemble.
Ebenezer Scrooge, who is visited on Christmas Eve by three ghosts who urge him to mend his ways, is played by graduate actor John Bergeron, who said stories of redemption appeal to him.
“The challenge to the actor is to find how dark, how miserable you can be while giving the audience reason to root for you,” Bergeron said.
Guest director Katie Campbell said the production will delight audiences of all ages.
“Equal parts ghost story, holiday cheer and humor, this heart-warming production will inspire a perfect yuletide outing for the whole family,” she said.
Five projectors and a bank of computers allow the technical team to offer spectacular imagery as a visual backdrop to the show.
The cast includes Matt Smith as the narrator, Ernest Bentley as Fred, Rachael Ann Smith as Fred’s wife and a laundress, Jacob Chapman as Bob Cratchit and Mr. Fezziwig, Jasmine Monét Walker as Mrs. Cratchit and the Ghost of Christmas Past, Grace Cretu as Tiny Tim, James Kern as Marley’s Ghost, Tim Hiemstra as young apprentice Scrooge, Laura Moore as Belle and a charwoman, and Ernest Emmanuel Peeples as the Ghost of Christmas Present and Old Joe.
The adult ensemble includes Cam Blackwell, Joe Gaskill, Sidni Goodman, Luke Hodgson, Durshara Kirby, Madeline Lorio, Geoff Nathan, Maria Smith, Matthew Woods, Kyle Sammy and Mike Vultaggio, and a youth ensemble with Evelyn Goll, Zoë Niemkiewicz, Forrest Gabel and Noel Garcia.
For tickets and more information, call 313-577-2972 or go to theatreanddanceatwayne.com.
PLAYERS GUILD OF DEARBORN ANNOUNCES ‘FOOLS’ CAST
The Players Guild of Dearborn announced the cast of “Fools,” the third show in its “Season of Simon.” Directed by Brian Townsend, the show runs Jan. 12 to 14, 19 to 21 and 26 to 28 at the theater, 21730 Madison, Dearborn.
When a man lands a teaching job in a country village, he’s ecstatic – until he discovers the village has been cursed with stupidity for two centuries and his challenge is to break the curse or become one of them.
The cast includes Tom Sparrow of Allen Park as Magistrate Kupchik, and Dearborn residents Phil Booth as Slovitch, Chris Boudreau as Mishkin, Alex Gojkov as Leon Tolchinsky, Adam Lynch as Snetsky and Matt VanHouten as Count Gregor Yousekevitch.
Also in the cast are Tiffany Mullins of Livonia as Lenya Zubritsky, Bill McCloskey of Monroe as Dr. Nikolai Zubritsky, Sheryl Faber Vachon of Oak Park as Yenchna and Kori Bielaniec of Westland as Sophia Zubritsky.
For tickets or more information, call 313-561-TKTS or go to playersguildofdearborn.org.