Arts & Entertainment

Tri-Cities Prep takes musical route

Director Nina Powers gave her Tri-Cities Prep drama students a choice when it came to how they would present their winter production of the classic holiday tale, A Christmas Carol.

"We could do a happy Disneyesque version full of Christmas lights, familiar tunes and bright decor," Powers said. "Or we could try to play it as authentically as possible. The students chose the latter, but the result is honestly somewhere in between."

The Catholic high school's musical production opens at 7 p.m. Dec. 5 in the school's gymnasium and continues Dec. 6. There also is a 3 p.m. matinee on Dec. 7. Admission is $10 adults, $5 students.

A Christmas Carol evolved from the creative mind of Charles Dickens in 19th century England -- London to be exact.

History books tell us that Dickens was frequently known to walk the streets of London for 10 to 20 miles, where he soaked up every detail of the city.

During that era, the well-to-do lived in close proximity to the poverty-riddled slums. And it is there that Dickens' story A Christmas Carol was born -- the place where poverty, in the form of Bob Cratchit and Tiny Tim, clashes with wealth and the notorious Ebenezer Scrooge.

And it's all enhanced by an uplifting message as well as an excellent mix of holiday music.

The Tri-Cities Prep cast includes senior James Powers as Scrooge; sophomore Jarrod Versteeg as the ghost of Jacob Marley; junior Veronica Jones as the spirit of Christmas Past; and senior Will Virden as the ghost of Christmas Present.

Filling out the supporting cast are junior Sam Mota-Martinez as Scrooge's nephew Fred, sophomore Erika Cole as Scrooge's sister Fan, freshman Annie Powers as Belle, and senior Yvonne Carrick and freshman Connor Smith as Mr. and Mrs. Fezziwig.

Director Powers credits the school's art teacher, Ginger Blodgett, for creating an authentic set. Powers and Tri-City musician Jeremy Neufeld came up with the play's musical score.

"Complete with music, dancing and real snow, it is my hope that A Christmas Carol will be an uplifting holiday experience for the whole audience," Powers said.

*Dori O'Neal: 582-1514;