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The Titan Theatre Company will offer 12 presentations of the Charles Dickens classic “A Christmas Carol” at Queens Theatre from Friday, Dec. 8, through Friday, Dec. 22, at various times. General admission is $18, but Queens Courier readers can get $2 discounts by purchasing tickets with the promo code “ITSINQUEENS16.”

First published as a novella in 1843, “A Christmas Carol” is a familiar story that introduced the terms “Scrooge” and “Bah Humbug” into the English language. Set in Victorian England, main character Ebenezer Scrooge is a banker who loves money, but hates humanity. In the opening scenes, the miser turns down an invitation to a family diner, refuses to help a person in need, and reluctantly gives his exploited clerk, Bob Cratchit, a day off for Christmas.

He falls asleep, and the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet-To-Come haunt his dreams. They take him on mini-adventures that force him to reflect on his bitter personality. The antagonist then wakes up as the protagonist. The new Scrooge raises Cratchit’s salary, spends time with his family, and gives money to charity.

However, Titan adds some twists to the tale with a score that was adapted by Emily Trask, an actress and cellist who also yodels, and company co-founder Lenny Banovez. The dialogue is fast-paced and provoking. The music is high-energy. And Scrooge is extremely grumpy in the beginning.

Plus, Laura Frye, who is female, plays the traditionally male role of Jacob Marley, a deceased business partner who appears in chains and berates Scrooge for his greed while showing him other people suffering. Frye’s new, button-pushing role will contrast with Michael Selkirk, a seasoned veteran who has played Scrooge countless times. This is his third year in a row with Titan.

Other performers include Titan members Marcus Denard Johnson as Cratchit, Alyssa Van Gorder as Mrs. Cratchit, and Gregory Couba as Mr. Fezziwig, a business owner who eschews maximizing his profits and treats his employees with respect and generosity. Other cast members are Braden Spear, Lindsay Nance, Christy Richardson, Maggie Wetzel, Sara Ornelas, Jake Lesh, Analiese Puzon, Kristiana Murphy, Tyler Palma, and Zoe Siegel. With six Queens residents, the youth cast includes Silas Wade, Julia Mechner, Ruby Lermann, Isabella Fiallo, Tekla Zurashvili, Melissa Muench, Mia Jacquez and Nia Jimenez.

Titan is a true borough institution. Based in Woodside, the troupe has been artist-in-residence at Queens Theatre for almost four years, and members often perform at Queens Library branches.

Queens Theatre is located at 14 United Nations Ave. S. in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Showtimes are Dec. 8 at 7:30 p.m.; Dec. 9 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; Dec. 10 at 4 p.m.; Dec. 14 and Dec. 15 at 7:30 p.m.; Dec. 16 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; Dec. 17 at 4 p.m.; and Dec. 20, Dec. 21, and Dec. 22 at 7:30 p.m.

Images: Titan Theatre Company


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