It’s the most wonderful time of the year, as the song goes, and I am deeply inclined to agree. The chill in the air, the warm drinks in our hands and the wonderful, wistful feeling of tradition bubbling up everywhere.
In my house, tradition means a tree and decorations, of course, but certain recipes also are pulled out of warm-weather hibernation, different albums are in rotation — lots of Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald — and “The Muppet Christmas Carol” plays on TV.
It also means that it’s time for “A Christmas Carol,” the musical, at Woodstock Arts — one of our time-honored programming traditions. There’s room for theatrical magic at every corner in Charles Dickens’ classic story, and, by virtue of being a story we all know and love, there is room to explore and expand on its resonance, without ever sacrificing all of the brilliant things we take comfort in.
Tradition also means seeing some of your favorite community members taking to the stage again, like Tony Vila returning as Scrooge or Darrell Meek as Jacob Marley. If you’ve seen the production before, there will be plenty of familiar faces in our show. And, because it allows for student actors and adults, our community gets to watch our younger actors grow from Tiny Tims to not so … Tiny … Tims. That one got away from me, but the sentiment still holds!
“A Christmas Carol” is one of the most special pieces of programming here at Woodstock Arts. Every year, it serves as a reminder of the question Dickens asks: What is it all for? What do I want to leave behind?
For us, it is all for you, our beloved community. And, the ability to share these wonderful resonant stories with you, and create them with you as you join onstage. This tradition means watching our community tell the story of “A Christmas Carol,” and watching it grow from year to year.
This is my first season as the artistic director at Woodstock Arts, but I think that this may be my new favorite Christmas tradition. So, whether you’ve made us one of your traditions in your Christmas past or not, I do hope that you’ll join us this year to make it one for your Christmas present, and your Christmas futures.
– Zach Stolz is the Artistic Director for theater at Woodstock Arts. firstname.lastname@example.org. For more upcoming events, connect with @woodstockgaarts on social media.