DAYTON - An adaptation of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" opens Friday at the Liberty Theater.
The production, with the stage play written by co-directors Brenda Chapman and Mike Ferrians, is the first fall play by the Touchet Valley Arts Council Productions that is not a full-blown musical, although the play has its musical moments.
"It's a stage play with some musical support," Ferrians said.
"Because we rounded out the 10th year with the reprise of ‘The Music Man,' it was an opportunity to do something different. In writing our own stage play, we saved ourselves a lot of money," Ferrians said.
An a cappella chorale sings Old World carols throughout the story. The audience will enjoy traditional holiday songs including "Bring the Torch Jeanette Isabella," "Here We come A Wassailing" and "I Saw Three Ships Come Sailing In."
Ferrians and Chapman are TVAC Productions veterans. Ferrians has performed several lead roles, and directed "Oliver" and "Fiddler on the Roof."
Chapman is working with her ninth production, but it is her first directing experience. She has helped choreograph several shows, and describes herself as part of the TVAC team.
There are many familiar faces in the cast, as well as some newcomers. As has always been the case since the live productions started, the cast draws from all ages and represents many vocations in the Dayton and Waitsburg communities.
Preschool teacher Paul Ihle makes his second appearance on stage as Bob Cratchit. His wife Janet plays the practical but devoted Mrs. Cratchit.
Tiny Tim is played by 9-year-old Morgan Boggs, a third grader at Dayton Elementary School.
Bret Moser, whose day job is pastor of the Waitsburg Presbyterian Church, is the portly Spirit of Christmas Present.
Sherri Huwe is the ethereal Spirit of Christmas Past, and retired farmer Jack McCaw is the morbid Spirit of Christmas Yet to Come.
Behind the scenes, Mary Luce has once again turned her needle to create period costumes. Laura Thorn keeps things running smoothly on and off the stage, and Debbie Baxter and Brian Graham put their artistic talents into the backdrops and artwork. Jim Thorn, who is usually behind his cello, is at the piano for this production, and he provides violin music for a dance scene.