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Christmas on the Air: A Live Radio Play
Saturday, December 22, 2018 @ 7:30 PM
The Orpheum Theatre Presents is pleased to announce its annual holiday production! Christmas on the Air: A Live Radio Play will be held on December 21 & 22 at 7:30pm, directed by Tim Holmes.
Over the past five years, The Orpheum Theatre has produced holiday radio plays that have told classic tales from It’s a Wonderful Life to Miracle on 34th Street to A Christmas Carol. The radio plays transport audiences back in time to a 1940s radio studio broadcasting live on Christmas Eve. Stories come to life as a small cast of actors perform them standing at an array of old-fashioned microphones, accompanied by live sound effects, musical underscoring, vintage commercials and more. The applause sign flashes, the actors squabble in the background, and familiar holiday tunes are heard all the while. Christmas on the Air holds true to this format, this time presenting some lesser-known Christmas tales.
Christmas on the Air: A Live Radio Play is an original play by Orpheum Theatre staff members Erin Glasnovich and Tim Holmes. After doing research into finding inspiring Christmas tales in the public domain, select stories and plays of old were adapted for the radio studio stage. “I read a lot of lovely old stories,” says Erin Glasnovich, who serves as Operations Manager at The Orpheum. “But, I had to restrict myself to keep within the confines of the radio play format. As I read, I looked for places in the text where sound effects could be added, Christmas carols could be slotted in, or little bits of business with the actors could occur.” Once the stories were adapted into plays as a framework, the rest of the production as a whole could be completed. “A great deal of the fun of a radio play is what happens in between the stories,” notes Tim Holmes, who directs the show and is also The Orpheum’s Box Office Manager. “We’ve gotten a lot of feedback in the past from radio play patrons who commented on how they loved the commercials, or enjoyed watching the players interact in the background. With being able to use our own play we have really broadened our ability to get creative with the show. It’s got the festive tales, but even more to watch and enjoy in between the scenes.”
Erin and Tims’ roles at The Orpheum Theatre and with this production span even further than creating this year’s radio play: they both take part onstage, as well. Erin portrays one of the radio actors, and Tim is the house pianist in the radio studio. “We wear many hats here at The Orpheum,” Erin remarks. “I must say, it is nice to, every December, be a part of this radio play tradition, and to step out from behind my desk and take the stage. We are fortunate to have this opportunity to flex our creativity and perform again.” The small ensemble of actors is completely comprised of local talent, and those patrons that have grown to love some of the characters they’ve seen in the past are likely to see them onstage again this year.
Christmas on the Air: A Live Radio Play will take place on Friday, December 21 and Saturday, December 22, both at 7:30pm at The Orpheum Theatre: 57 South Kellogg Street, Galesburg. Tickets for this event are $10 for the adults, and $8 for students and children. Purchase your tickets by visiting or calling (309.342.2299) the Box Office during office hours (10am-5pm, Tuesday thru Friday) or online at www.galesburgorpheum.org/tickets.