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Hollywood Snippets

by Ron Irwin

‘A Carol Christmas’ in review


 A Carol Christmas– Credit:The Group Rep


I remember getting the invite and I was excited.  First of all it was being put on by The Group Rep at the Lonny Chapmen Theatre where I Always have a great time watching outstanding performances.  And who doesn’t like that wonderful classic, “A Christmas Carol” where once again I can watch the eventual transformation of that crotchety geezer Ebenezer.  Then I got to the theatre and looked at the play bill.  Wait a minute, this must be a misprint.  It read “A Carol Christmas” and not A Christmas Carol.  Nope no misprint, just a vastly different show with basically a female Ebenezer by the name of Carol who like Ebenezer was a less than pleasant boss who unlike Ebenezer was not transformed by the spirits of Christmas past, present and future but rather by three more contemporary psychic gurus including one terrifying Tarot card reader who like the Spirit of Christmas future transformed Carol into an extremely pleasant, loving and giving woman.  So yeah in the end it was very much the same story but told in different and compelling way with the famous Charles Dickens version having been tweaked by Doug Haverty.  It is also a musical. 

Hartley Powers – Photo:The Group Rep


As the show begins five young carolers, Celine June Batista, Ellie Birdwell, Andrew Grigorian, Chihiro Kato and Momoka Kato come on stage and perform “Christmas Time is Here Again” followed by the entire company staff with “Just Another Christmas” and then Carol renders a rather harsh version of “All I want for Christmas” and the tone is set.  But then there is an outstanding and beautiful performance by a very young and very talented actress/vocalist Peyton Kirkner as Trina. Her performance of “Spelling Backwards” is truly emosewa. 

Peyton Kirkner – Photo:Facebook


The show is only 90 minutes with no intermission but every one of those 90 minutes is packed with true entertainment value.  Yes this is a great show but does it mean that in the future we will be seeing more of “A Carol Christmas” and less of “A Christmas Carol?”  I don’t think so, but I do believe that if you get yourself over to the Lonny Chapman Theatre to see this show you too will emerge happy and even more ready for a great holiday season. 

The show runs from now through December 30th 2018 with show times 8:00 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and at 2:00 p.m. on Sundays at the Lonny Chapman Theatre, 10900 Burbank Boulevard, North Hollywood, California.  Reservations and ticketing available by calling:  818-763-5990 or online at: