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‘Carol’ a joyful family favorite

GREAT ACTING, DANCING AND REALISTIC SETS

Josh Bartell, 10, of La Crescenta is in the fifth grade at La

Crescenta Elementary School.

“A Christmas Carol” is an old-fashioned play based on Charles

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Dickens’ story and is playing at The Glendale Centre Theatre. In this

production, director Tim Dietlein makes everything look so real. He

did an amazing job of getting the actors ready for their

performances. The dancing and the singing are absolutely

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breathtaking. The costumes really look as though they were made in

England in the 1800s.

Bob Cratchit, played by Michael Lundy, is a character who always

thinks about his family. He does all the scenes set out for him

faultlessly. The Ghost of Christmas Present, played by Jeff McCredie,

is very exuberant and looks like he is enjoying his brief stay on

earth. He helps Scrooge understand that children are a part of this

world too. He was by far my favorite character in the play. Kevin

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Patterson is excellent as Tiny Tim. How the costume designer enabled

him walk with the splint and crutch was beyond me.

This is funny, exciting and scary at some points, and it’s all in

one play.

ALL THE CHARACTERS ARE ENDEARINGLY PORTRAYED

Deborah Charlie-Bartell of La Crescenta is a professor at

Antelope Valley College and the mother of fellow critic Josh Bartell.

What’s Christmas without Scrooge? The Glendale Centre Theatre’s

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rendition of Charles Dickens’ classic story “A Christmas Carol” show-

cases one of the most likable curmudgeons to “bah, humbug” his way

through this familiar holiday tradition.

Robert Towers brings a level of energy and spark to this

well-known grouch, while still producing the necessary heartfelt

sentiments we have all come to expect. But if Scrooge is the story’s

soul in need of saving, Bob Cratchit is its heart. Played with just

the right mixture of humility and humor, Michael Lundy touches all

the right chords. In fact, the entire Cratchit family manages to win

over the audience.

Jeff McCredie makes a ghostly and jocular appearance as everyone’s

favorite haunt, the Ghost of Christmas Present. This particular

adaptation by Brenda Dietlein offers the audience an added

attraction: the voice of Dickens’ narrator performed by several cast

members who magically step out of the play’s action to tell the

story. This technique nicely ties the spoken words of drama with the

written words of literature.

Add to this the melodies and lyrics of memorable holiday songs,

and you have all the makings of an entertaining evening. Various cast

members (numbering at times close to 20) literally weave their way

and their holiday spirit throughout the audience and across the stage

dressed in colorful, Victorian costumes, making this production a joy

to watch for everyone.


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