Say ‘Bah Humbug’ to other shows

Liz Bos

Liz Bos

Theater attendees will have another chance to hear “Humbug!” this holiday season when Scrooge! opens in Doner Auditorium Dec. 3.

“It’s a lovely way to start your holiday season,” said stage manager Heather Slunecka, a senior speech communication and theater major. “It will make you want to be with your family.”

The show is a musical retelling of the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol with some innovative makeup and costume effects. State University Theatre has done productions of A Christmas Carol in the past, but this is the first time they will be doing a musical version. Performances are expected to sell out fast, due to Doner Auditorium losing 300 seats after the balcony was closed.

“Everybody knows the story of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol,” director J.D. Ackman said. “It’s a different take on the story, so that made it an easy decision.”

Scrooge! will not be a horror show but will stay true to the spirit of the original story. The music is an important part of the story, unlike some other musicals where the entire production halts to sing a song.

“The songs keep the action going,” Ackman said.

Rehearsals started on Oct. 27. The show will feature 39 college students and nine children from the region, with more than 60 other people working in backstage roles. With such a large cast and crew, Scrooge! is one of the largest productions the school has put on in recent years.

“One good thing is that it allows a large number of students to be onstage,” Ackman said.

The show has actually been put together in the time period of about three weeks, which is shorter than some smaller shows. Despite the large workload, Ackman said that everyone was having a good time.

“It’s been fun because I always get the stoic parts, but with Marley, I get to be goofy,” said Paul Gliarmis, a sophomore speech communication and theater major, who plays Jacob Marley.

Scrooge! features over 90 costumes, with 40 of them specially built for the show. The costumes represent styles from 1800 to 1840 in order to match the time period of the original story. Some of the costumes even light up. Special glasses accurate to the time period were also ordered for Mason Ives, who plays Tiny Tim.

“A lot of research was done for this show,” said assistant costume designer Chilee Nlyea, a sophomore English education major.

Most of the costumes were designed by Billy Wilburn, the show’s head costume designer.

“This is an opportunity for people to see special effects and fantasy that we don’t normally get to see,” Wilburn said.

Each of the three Christmas ghosts will have their own specific look, and one of them will be around 13 feet tall. The designers started with Dickens’ original descriptions of the ghosts and went from there in their designs.

The production is also participating in Project Joy this year. Toys, mittens and non-perishable food can be brought to the theater or to various collection points set up around Brookings. All donations will go toward children in the area.

“We thought it would go well with the overall theme,” Ackman said.

Scrooge! opens Dec. 3 at 7:30 p.m., continuing through Dec. 6, with matinee performances at 2 p.m. on Dec. 6 and Dec. 7. Students are admitted free with student ID.

“We’ve put a lot of work into these shows, and it’s always great to see students come to the show and support us,” said Will Reinbold, who plays Scrooge.

#1.882123:1561820219.jpg:Scrooge.CMYK.jpg:Ebenezer Scrooge (Will Reinbold) is shown the grim fate that awaits him should he fail to change his ways.:Ethan Swanson