For the third year in a row, 3heARTS Productions will present their original play “Carol’s Christmas,” a twist on the Charles Dickens classic “A Christmas Carol.” As always, all proceeds from the production will be donated to a charity, this year’s beneficiary being the American Cancer Society.
“Carol’s Christmas,” which will be performed in the theater at Bishop Hendricken High School on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, tells the story of the classic tale but from a different perspective.
“The play opens up in this other realm. This woman is the narrator and she sends her employee Carol out on an assignment. Charles Dickens has writer’s block,” explained Shannon McLoud, the play’s writer. The remainder of the play questions what it would be like if Charles Dickens never wrote “A Christmas Carol” before turning into a condensed version of the classic tale for the second act.
McCloud explained that she is also an English teacher by trade, so there is a little bit of history in the play and facts from Dickens’ real life.
McLoud, one of the founders of 3heARTS [3 hearts], wrote the play three years ago because she was interested in creating something Christmas-related for her production company to put on and always loved the story.
“I actually wrote it to be performed at a church,” explained McLoud. The inaugural production in December 2011 raised $400 and was donated to local cancer patients.
Because of limited space at the church, Tom Morey, who plays Charles Dickens and is chair of the Math department at Hendricken, helped coordinate use of the school’s theater for rehearsal and shows on days when it is not being used for the school’s fall production. Some Hendricken students participate in the play.
Over the years, the cast has remained largely the same.
“We’ve been lucky,” said McLoud. “We’ve kept ‘Carol’s Christmas’ practically the same.”
She admits that some of the Hendricken performers have changed because of graduation, but otherwise the cast, which is made largely of people who have participated in theater before, stays the same.
The sentiment to donate the proceeds from the production to charities has also remained the same. 3heARTS Productions was formed in 2011 by McLoud and two childhood friends looking for a way to perform in theater productions together again but not have the burden of creating a professional production business. The group writes their productions, which include a cabaret called “Songs of Love” as well as “Carol’s Christmas,” and alternate the benefiting charities.
“We’ve switched between two charities. We did things that really ment something to us,” said McLoud, explaining that last year’s Christmas production and the May 2011 production of “Songs of Love” benefited the Huntington’s Disease Society of America in honor of a family member.
According to a press release about the production, the organization’s founders believe that “the arts can heal,” and “theatre can move you to laugh, to cry, to feel and to think. It is with that sentiment in mind that we donate proceeds to worthy charities, hoping to not only make our audiences laugh or cry, but to help others in the process.”
In total, 3heARTS Productions has raised more than $3,500 for cancer and Huntington’s disease charities.
This year the choice was made to give funds to the American Cancer Society because of how far-reaching cancer is among people.
“With the American Cancer Society, it is hard to find someone who hasn’t been affected by cancer,” explained McLoud.
“Carol’s Christmas” will be performed on Saturday, Nov. 30 at 2 and 7 p.m., and on Sunday Dec. 1 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 general admission and $8 for students and seniors. They can be purchased at the door, or reservations can be made by calling 206-6604 or at www.3heartsproductions.