TAP Presents “A Christmas Carol” with Alum John Ratzenberger

Sacred Heart University’s Theatre Arts Program (TAP) is presenting its second annual production of “A Christmas Carol,” directed by the Executive Director of Performing Arts, Jerry Goehring. The show will take place at the Edgerton Center for Performing Arts from Dec. 15-17.

This production was adapted by a SHU alumna, Grace Curley. The aim of this adaptation is to draw attention to specificcomponents that dive into the character’s

backstories and show what it is to be human.

In a previous interview with The Spectrum, Curley said, “I wanted this version to show that human beings are capable of change, that they can find the thing within themselves that was once lost. I believe this is what captures the true Christmas spirit.”

This production is tailored to the Sacred Heart community as it features performances from faculty, staff, students and alumni.

“Because it was written by a former student, we really got to tailor the piece to our community here at SHU, making a very unique adaptation of the show,” said sophomore David Irizarry.

One particular alumni in the production is John Ratzenberger, who plays Ebenezer Scrooge. Ratzenberger is a well known actor recognized for his roles in “Cheers,” “Toy Story” and “Cars.”

The program’s sense of unity and belonging touched Ratzenberger.

“I’ve gotten a lot of help here. I’ve never seen such professionalism within a young group. I’m very impressed by their dedication and enthusiasm,” said Ratzenberger in a previous Spectrum article.

Because “A Christmas Carol” has become a tradition, it has allowed for the program to learn and grow from its past production. One aspect of the show they are improving is the technical aspect.

The production’s stage manager, senior Grace Posillico, noted the technical work they have been incorporating into the production.

“We’re trying to find new ways to add video editing and ways to layer things on top of it. So, it’s all about taking where we left off and just growing and making it fun,” said Posillico.

Junior Grace Peknic, a member of the production, also discussed these adaptations.

“We are adapting with the times of theater. Theater is really changing right now into a tech world, and we are producing such a high level of quality with our tech that it is like you’re seeing a Broadway production in Fairfield, Connecticut,” said Peknic.

Last year, TAP held three showings. It was a draw to many, and they sold out all of their shows. Due to the excitement for the production, another show was added for this year. “A Christmas Carol” now has four showings, including a two-show day.

“I think it will really give us a chance to build upon previous years’ work and continue to spread the message of this show for multiple generations of people,” said Irizarry about the tradition of the show.

The TAP program has worked hard to make this production of the classic “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens unique.

“It really raises the bar of what you’d expect from an average Christmas play. Not only is this adaptation very unique, but it also features a variety of great performances and top-notch production value,” said Irizarry.

Steph Patella contributed to this article.

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