The Avalon Foundation's annual Holiday performance - This year Miracle on 34th Street - premiers tonight, December 19th at 7:00pm, doors open at 6:30. Other performances are Saturday, December 20th at 7:00pm, Sunday, December 21st at 2:00pm, a special Dinner Theatre performance on Monday, December 22nd at 6:00pm, and concludes the weekend after Christmas with performances on Saturday, December 27th at 7:00pm and Sunday, December 28th at 2:00pm. Tickets can be purchased online at avalonfoundation.org and by calling 410-822-7299.
It’s that time of year. The air is crisper. Mittens have been pulled out of the back of your closet. Wreaths and festive lights adorn the charming downtown streets of Easton. All of this can only mean one thing. That’s right! It’s that magical time of year when you take in an Eastern Shore tradition, the Avalon Theatre’s Christmas play.
This year the Avalon is producing, “Miracle on 34th Street”, based on the 20th Century Fox 1947 classic. If you are ready to get in the spirit of the season with the whole community the Avalon Foundation’s holiday play is sure to please.
The perennial classic “Miracle on 34th Street” is much more than simply a Christmas play. This post-war masterpiece questions matters of faith and the belief in magic. In this story, the real Santa Claus must get help from friends to prove that he is in fact St. Nick and not just a senile elderly man. By questioning the cynicism of adults and encouraging people to relive the innocence of childhood, this play never fails to get everyone in the Christmas spirit.
Starring in this year’s play is Laurie Forster (The Wine Coach), as Doris Walker, Jim Fodrie (from Mule Train) as Fred Gayley, Bella Grant as Susan Walker and John Norton as Kris Kringle. “We have worked very hard with all of our actors on bringing this play to life in a truthful way,” said director Tim Weigand. “There is whimsy in this production for sure but there are strong characters and a beautiful message as well. It’s a message that has lasted for 67 years.”
The Avalon Foundation’s goal with the holiday production has always been about bringing the community together both in the theatre and on the stage to celebrate together during the holidays. The production typically puts to use some 60 – 70 residents in order to make the show happen. The play stars your friends and neighbors and additional cast members include Margaret Garey, Anastasiia Putkova, John Ford, Tyniqua Brooks, Zach Schlag, Hal Petschke, Anna Chroniger, Ira Nelson, Gene Counihan, Anthony Brinkley, Dale Rauch, Marianne Petschke, Gryphon Corpus, Ashley Chroniger, Zoe Pochron, Reyn Tull, Evelyn Russ, Beth Ewing, Sappho Heavey, Ella Murphy, Savannah Masterson, Selene Wagner, David Rogers, Gabriel Jones, Seth Wagner, Portia Hughes, and Richard Spearman. Sets have been constructed by Alan Sleeper and Al Bond. Set decoration comes courtesy of muralist Maggie Sarfarty. Cavin Moore is the choreographer, Cece Davis will handle costuming this year and Ryan Finch is the stage manager. Costumes come courtesy of Marie U’Ren’s costume shop. Molly George and Jessica Rogers are the assistant Producer and Producer, respectively.
“It’s our biggest fundraiser of the year,” said Avalon Foundation General Manager Jessica Rogers. “This production helps in funding all of the events that the Foundation brings to Talbot County year round, including the Farmers Market, the Fireworks and Carnival on the 4th of July, the Outdoor Summer Concert Series, and the Multicultural Festival to name just a few. We have been amazed over the course of the years with the quality of the production and the amount of people who come out and support the event and leave full of Christmas spirit. That’s what it is all about.”
“Miracle on 34th Street” opens on December 19th and runs through the 22nd, then picks up two days after Christmas on the 27th and 28th. For tickets, show times and more information please call Victoria in The Avalon Box office at 410-822-7299 or visit the Theatre online at avalonfoundation.org.