It's 40 Years Of A Christmas Carol
The Goodman Theatre celebrates four decades of the heartwarming holiday jewel
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IT is, as many have described it, “one of the most important parts of Christmas,” an integral component of the holiday magic that comes during “the most wonderful time of the year.” It is the classic Charles Dickens tale, A Christmas Carol, a yuletide tradition at the Goodman Theatre, where, through December 31, it’s being celebrated for 40 years of presentations at the award-winning venue.
“We’re extremely proud to present the 40th annual production of A Christmas Carol. The ability to share this story each year with audiences is an enormous privilege and has unquestionably been the highlight of my life in the theater,” says Roche Schulfer, executive director of the Goodman Theatre. “For all of us at the Goodman, A Christmas Carol is much more than holiday entertainment or a diversion. In fact, we believe that Charles Dickens’ story promotes values that are universal––compassion, understanding, love, empathy, forgiveness and redemption. I am grateful to all of the countless artists, professionals and patrons who make it possible.”
Dickens’ holiday classic, a touching story of hope and redemption, is the tale of greedy, hard-as-nails businessman Ebenezer Scrooge, whose miserly ways are only matched by his total disdain (“Bah! Humbug!”) for the holidays. However, on one Christmas Eve, Scrooge receives visits from four ghosts who take him on an amusing adventure through the past, present and future, leading to his redemption and initiating his new attitude toward the joys of life, love and friendship.
During its run at the Goodman, A Christmas Carol has entertained more than 1.5 million audience members from neighborhoods throughout the city, many of whom have experienced the talents of 10 directors, including those of Goodman Artistic Associate Henry Wishcamper, now in his fifth year as the play’s director. The cast as well has undergone many changes and represented some milestones, including this year’s selection of 10-year-old, fourth-grader Paris Strickland, making her Goodman debut as the first female Tiny Tim. Like the character she plays, the bright-eyed Strickland has endured her own medical challenges, being diagnosed nine days after her birth with neuroblastoma, a rare form of cancer that affects the nervous system. Her cancer is now in remission, and she hopes her role helps her to bring a bit of hope to everyone.
"We're extremely proud to present the 40th annual production of A Christmas Carol. The ability to share this story each year with audiences is an enormous privilege."
–– Roche Schulfer
Executive Director, Goodman Theatre
Chicago favorite Larry Yando has returned for his 10th stint as the miserly and crabby Ebenezer Scrooge in A Christmas Carol at the Goodman Theatre.
Paris Strickland makes her Goodman Theatre debut as the first female to be cast in the role of Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol.
The newest member of the cast––although in the spotlight––has to share the stage with two of the show’s most popular mainstays. Larry Yando, who probably has become the region’s favorite Scrooge, has returned for his 10th season as the crusty, tightfisted codger who, at one point, hates everything about Christmas and is a pain in the side of Bob Cratchit, superbly played by Ron E. Rains, now in his 11th year as the lovable and hardworking family man.
As the Christmas holidays get closer, A Christmas Carol continues to be embedded in the hearts and souls of millions who view this iconic production as one of the most entertaining vehicles to deliver the true meaning of Christmas. And perhaps––at least for 40 years––no one has done more to help spread that message than the Goodman Theater.
Ron E. Rains as Bob Cratchit.
For tickets and more information on the show and the celebrations, go to www.goodmantheatre.org.