Fundraiser stars ‘family’ from Actors Theatre’s ‘A Christmas Carol’ - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Valley And State

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Fundraiser stars ‘family’ from Actors Theatre’s ‘A Christmas Carol’

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Posted: Thursday, December 8, 2011 2:00 pm

Friends and family of Actors Theatre will come together for “A Christmas Carol in Concert: A Special Fundraising Event to benefit Actors Theatre at 1 p.m. Dec. 24 on the Herberger Theater Center Main Stage.

Cast members representing the past 10 years of “A Christmas Carol” will read all the lines and sing all the songs from chairs in front of the main curtain. There will be no sets or costumes.

“We’re thinking of this as radio version of ‘A Christmas Carol’ or even ‘A Christmas Carol Unplugged,’” said Actors Theatre producing artistic director Matthew Wiener. “What’s so wonderful is that former cast members who brought the gift of this show to the community for 19 years are now bringing the gift of the show as a benefit for Actors Theatre.”

Led primarily by the 2010 cast, the effort is being coordinated by actors Maria Amorocho, Gene Ganssle and David Vining.  Actors Theatre staged its final run of “A Christmas Carol” in 2010, but Wiener said he “hopes to bring back the full production sometime in the future assuming we’re able to achieve our fundraising goals and continue operating.”

“Many of us performed for years together in ‘A Christmas Carol,’ and we became like family getting together for the holidays,” Vining said.  “We can think of no better way to be able to give back to Actors Theatre than to help keep the doors open. And we can think of no better way to give back to the community than in this special performance.”

Amorocho agreed.

“The memories I have from being a part of the cast go far beyond what we were able to produce on the stage,” she said. “There was a very special bond among us having spent so much time together in rehearsals, on show nights and even acting together in the months and years that followed. We also built a special bond with the audiences that came back year after year. We grew up with them, and they grew up with us.”

Ganssle hopes the one-time fundraiser will lead to a full production in the next year or two. In addition to performing, he is producing a number of videos featuring cast-member interviews that will be posted on YouTube, as well as the Actors Theatre Facebook page and website.

Tickets will be available online at or by phone through the Actors Theatre office at 602-253-6701. Tickets are $50 for adults and $25 for children 12 and under. Once the first 350 in tickets are sold, the cost will rise to $75 for adults and $50 for children 12 and under.

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