Jeanne Beechwood, Sean Taylor and physically challenged senior dogs, including Lil’ Bit as Tiny Tim who admires the turkey leg offered by a reformed Ebenezer Scrooge. Photo by Sue Reames
Martin City Melodrama Celebrates Christmas
By Sue Reames
Here they go again!!
Now in their 35th season of family-oriented fun, Martin City Melodrama & Vaudeville Company presents their newest Christmas laugh-fest, Scrooged and Marley, a spoof of “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens.
Written by artistic director Jeanne Beechwood, Scrooged and Marley centers around the aging Ebenezer Scrooge’s need for a service dog to help him get around. Much to his surprise, Scrooge receives a companion dog who just happens to be the reincarnation of his deceased business partner Jacob Marley. Scrooge and Marley encounter some unusual spirits in the guise of famous Christmas “carols” throughout their Christmas Eve. These spirits include Carol Brady and Carole King. Finally, Ebenezer Scrooge sees the error of his ways and, with the help of Marley and the famous Carols, Scrooge is transformed for good. He has finally found his holiday spirit and, from the roof-tops, he shouts “Dog bless us everyone!” Sean Taylor portrays Ebenezer Scrooge with much gusto as he deals with his surprising circumstances.
Known for her concern and care for senior dogs, Beechwood is featuring eight of her adopted dogs as characters such as Jacob Marley, Bob Crachit and other members of the Crachit family. Beechwood uses her plays in order to encourage the adoption of senior dogs amongst the audience.
After Scrooged and Marley, the ensemble returns to the stage with a holiday review, including their infamous Water Glass Symphony. This year also marks the debut of Christmas Chickens, a product of Sean Taylor’s creativity.
If one might recognize Sean Taylor’s face, it may be due to the fact that he is employed by the Kansas City Public Library and has worked with veterans on dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. His long-term goal for the Vaudeville Company is to develop a stage production involving the stories of those veterans.
The Vaudeville Company has dabbled with more serious themes in programs such as “Life in a Chair”, which will be revisited this season. In addition, the company hopes to continue Komedy Kidstitute as well as Top Bananas, an educational theatre program designed to empower special needs individuals to get on stage and shine in original productions
Scrooged and Marley performances are scheduled for December 6 through January 1; Saturday performances at 7:30 pm and Sunday matinees at 3:30 pm. Beechwood promises hot apple cider, sarsaparilla, and popcorn will be available for purchase during intermission. As always, reservations are essential. Call (913) 642-7576.