Three actors portray all of the characters in “A Christmas Carol,” as the Traveling Literary Theater brings the Dickens classic to the Crane House in Asbury Park Sun., Dec. 11.
“Decrease the surplus population!” That famous quote, attributed to one Ebenezer Scrooge, is familiar from numerous dramatizations of the most beloved Yuletide tale by Charles Dickens — and on the afternoon of Sun.,Dec.11, a troupe of professional actors takes those words to heart, with an intimate adaptation of “A Christmas Carol” presented at the in-house performance space of The Stephen Crane House, 508 Fourth Ave., Asbury Park.
Produced by the New Jersey company of North Carolina-based Traveling Literary Theater, the hour-long adaptation finds a trio of veteran players from Shore area stages performing in costume as they portray all of the characters in the classic story of the Victorian-era miser’s redemption at the hands of those holiday spirits in the night. Returning to the historic home and local literary landmark for the first time since a November staging of Crane’s “Reluctant Voyagers” are Charles Deitz and Sandra McLaughlin, joined by newcomer Bill King in the program that starts at 3:00 p.m., and is dedicated to the Asbury Park Kiwanis Club and its campaign to brighten the holiday of the city’s “Tiny Tims.”
The three performers have worked together in numerous presentations of “A Christmas Carol” and other Traveling Literary adaptations at museums, libraries, tea houses and other unusual venues around the Garden State. Their collective credits include dozens of productions for such area troupes as First Avenue Playhouse (Atlantic Highlands), Center Players (Freehold), Monmouth Players (Middletown), Holmdel Theater Company, and Shakespeare by the Sea, the Spring Lake series founded by Ms. McLaughlin.
For the Sunday matinee program, attendees are asked to bring a suggested cash donation of $10 and/or a new unwrapped toy, to benefit the Kiwanis Club Toy Drive. This is the first annual holiday season initiative from the recently revived Asbury Park Kiwanis chapter, the organization (under the direction of Cori Lewin) that took over the yearly toy drive from retired city police officer Connie Breech.
Doors open at 2:30 p.m. for the limited-seating 3 p.m. event, with complimentary refreshments served. Additional info on this and other upcoming events at the Stephen Crane House is available by calling (732)361-0189.