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Stephens presents 'Inspecting Carol'

December 9, 2013

Expect lots of laughs and some zany holiday cheer when Stephens College presents “Inspecting Carol” this month.

The play, originally written by Daniel J. Sullivan for the Seattle Repertory Theatre, is a behind-the-scenes look at a cash-strapped community theatre’s production of “A Christmas Carol.”

“Basically anything that can go wrong in a rehearsal process does go wrong,” Director Dan Schultz said. “The company starts rehearsing too late, so new cast members don’t know their lines, experienced cast members are bored, so they make last minute changes, and there are all sorts of technical problems. What results is a hysterical comedy of errors.”

When the third-tier theatre learns its funding is about to be cut, the cast of characters—including a not-so-tiny Tim and a wannabe actor who is mistaken for a National Endowment of the Arts inspector—goes out of its way to provide the company’s worth.

“For our acting students, the show gives them their first opportunity this year to work on a straight-up comedy," Schultz said. "It’s challenging for actors to play broad comic types honestly and this show offers the chance to experience that.”

The play requires students to “find the hero” in their characters, even though some of the characters don’t quite have the theatrical skills of others, he added.

“They have to first create a compelling character who then also happens to be an actor with limited skills,” he said.

The show gives student designers a challenge, too, requiring them to essentially design two shows in one.

Rated PG-13 for adult situations, the production promises to be a lough-out-loud spoof on a holiday favorite.

Show times are 7:30 p.m. Dec. 11-12 at Macklanburg Playhouse. Ticket information.

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