We caught up with some of the cast of A Christmas Carol and asked them, “What did you enjoy most about being part of this year’s cast?”
The cast has been amazing this year! Their answers were full of excitement and joy. Gwen Cable answered, “…I was able to take on the challenge of expressing my character through voice only and was safely able to share this Seattle tradition.”
Gwen Cable (Belinda/Elizabeth, Fan) touched on something ACT has been extremely committed to – the safety of our cast. Recording A Christmas Carol during a pandemic has been full of excitement and some worry. How are we going to record? How do we keep the cast safe? How do we connect with the cast and customers? All of these questions have been top of mind as we move into 2021.
Tracy Hyland (Mrs. Cratchit, Sugar Plum Seller) emphasized, “I especially enjoy the fact that I can share this year’s radio production with loved ones who live far away!” We recently found out that A Christmas Carol is attracting audiences from all over the country. Someone recently bough tickets from Arizona – how exciting?
Then there is the community of artists that came together to bring us A Christmas Carol. Rob Burgess (Mr. Fezziwig, Topper, Solicitor #2 ) described it as, “Just creating with other artists in the theatre…on a STAGE…sharing deeply sentimental laughter and tears (albeit over headphones) with each other…seeing familiar faces…virtual hugs…too much to list!” It is amazing to know that the cast was able to connect with one another despite all the very strict COVID regulations.
For others, they were able to play different characters this year. Venerable actor/director (former ACT Artistic Director) and veteran of many A Christmas Carols past Kurt Beattie got to play Marley, a role he has never taken on before, and he was so excited about it. Piper Harden (Tiny Tim) emphasized that she got to see so many of her friends from the past. Finally, Alban Dennis Bob remembered past cast members (Cratchit, Grocer), “I have so enjoyed being a part of in year’s past and to remember all of the artists with whom I have worked on the show who are now no longer with us. We are forever grateful for all current and past cast members for making A Christmas Carol so special.
Do not miss this year’s A Christmas Carol. Streaming starts November 27. Get your tickets now and enjoy this radio-style audio play for a full month, whenever you like: https://order.acttheatre.org/acc2020/ondemand.
For the full answers from our cast and crew, continue below!
Leslie Law: What did I enjoy most this year? It was extremely special to be able to be a part of bringing this gorgeous story to families this year in such trying times, when we need it more than ever. It was a joy to create an entirely new version of this beautiful adaptation, with Adam Stern’s glorious music and this talented cast. And sound effects!
Nathaniel Tenenbaum: This might be a bit TMI, but I was just talking with my therapist about this very thing this morning. I expressed to him that I had such anxiety about stepping into this venture, my background is quite the hodge podge of Judaism and Jehovah’s Witness so Christmas is just not something my knowledge base expands into. That aside, what I’ve found during this process is something that I think i’ll keep with me forever. The production was almost impervious to this pandemic, every single cast and crew member took their time to regale me of the history and tradition since I am a complete newcomer, I think the going phrase whenever I was around was “Okay, Nate so imagine this happening…..” It was just such a joy to see every single person light up in the midst of all of this uncertainty we have going on. The story and the tradition sort of picks you up in a warm blanket, puts the kettle on and puts another log on the fire. By the end of it, I felt like family (despite being semi separate for most of the process) that closeness and sharing of tradition is just enough to make me beam every now and then in the midst of the craziness.
Rob Burgess: So MANY things that I loved about it! Just creating with other artists in the theatre…on a STAGE…sharing deeply sentimental laughter and tears (albeit over headphones) with each other…seeing familiar faces…virtual hugs….too much to list! I am so grateful just to have been a part of it!
Kurt Beattie: It’s been a great pleasure participating in this Christmas Carol, as always for the chance to encounter the wonderful story, but equally, to simply have the opportunity to connect with a terrific group of talented artists making theatre again, and also to be playing MARLEY in this version, a role I have never done before!
Gwyneth Cable: I enjoyed being a part of this year’s A Christmas Carol cast because I was able to take on the challenge of expressing my character through voice only, and was safely able to share this Seattle tradition that brings Christmas joy to so many families.
Arlando Smith: I enjoyed the opportunity to return to work with old and new faces; telling an old story that feels so relevant and necessary on today’s world. It’s very much like the character I play (Fred) to feel like the obstacles of the day are actually opportunities. I’m eager for the audience to discover A Christmas Carol in this new fashion.
Tracy Hyland: My family loves A Christmas Carol at ACT! Like many people, this story moves and inspires me every time I experience it. After what has been a historically dramatic year, it is comforting to know that the Christmas Carol tradition is a reliable, unstoppable joy. I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to return to ACT – a place I love and miss during this year’s closures – to gather safely with other artists I admire to tell this tale. I especially enjoy the fact that I can share this year’s radio production with loved ones who live far away!
Alban Dennis: My favorite part was working with John and the crew to tell a story that I have so enjoyed being a part of in year’s past and to remember all of the artists with whom I have worked on the show who are now no longer with us. Especially Connie, Carolyn and Mark Chamberlain. And to spend time with this most excellent cast!
Piper Harden: It was so different and fun. I also loved seeing so many friends from years past.
Apollo Jones: I was honored to be asked to be a part of ACT’s first-ever A Christmas Carol radio show – it’s really fun to be a part of creating something new. I loved working with old & new friends in person in a creative environment, which we haven’t been able to do since the COVID-19 shutdown. It was interesting to work in the theatre space with new tech for recording the radio, all while following new Covid safety rules. And, finally, I also liked the notion that this show could live on, forever. I’m so glad that ACT decided to do this radio show.
Rachel Guyer-Mafune: It felt like such a treat to back inside ACT Theatre, and see so many people I adore and look up to in person. It was especially wonderful to see some younger cast members I worked with on the 2018 production. To see how they have grown as both people and actors was an absolute delight. ACT went above and beyond to keep us all safe and healthy, and I appreciated that so so much. It was also super duper cool to take on characters I didn’t play in the last production. In general, I was honored to be involved in the show for the 2nd time.