Fill in the blanks: “Every time a ______ rings, an angel gets his _________”. If you were thinking bell and wings then you must be familiar with the classic Christmas movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life”.
Timpanogos Valley Theater will be performing “It’s a Wonderful Life, A Live Radio Play” this holiday season. The timeless George Bailey and his wife Mary; Clarence the angel, and the antagonistic Mr. Potter; and all the other beloved characters of Bedford Falls will be brought to life to share this inspiring story of life, hope, and friendship. The production is a little different than just a regular stage play. This radio style script will transport the audience back to the entertainment era known as the “The Golden Age of Radio”.
Director Kristen Hughes enthusiastically explains, “The ensemble members do the voices for every character in the story. So, they are constantly switching! It’s a blast to watch. It is like a really fun reader’s theater complete with advertising jingles and Christmas carols from the post WWII era.”
The show encompasses two different casts. Kevin and Felicia Siggard, Cevin Carr, David Burrow, and Cary Hobbs are the main characters in one cast while Nathan Moulton, Jessica Wall, Tom Hughes, Gary Harter, and Bo Walker make up the second. Both sets include three jazz musicians and a foley artist. Foley artists recreate an array of everyday sounds in real time, rather than pulling pre-recorded sounds, for film and theater to enhance the overall experience. “Our foley artist is a gentleman by the name of Jared Wright. He’s a local musician. He built a wind machine for the show and has been having a ball experimenting with all kinds of sounds. It’s amazing to hear! One sound we were having a problem getting right was a car door. And one day he showed up with an antique metal tool box. When he opened and closed it, it sounded just like an old car door,” Hughes explains.
Another local touch to the play will be the commercials. The radio show will feature ‘live commercials’ tailored to some of our valley’s businesses, and arranged using the jingle style of the late 1940’s. Set in 1946; the play’s production team, led by Gary Harter, have added touches that were authentic to a real radio station, including electric art deco “on air” and “applause” signs, glass windows, and vintage doors.
Hughes encourages everyone to come, “I hope people come see the show during the holidays with their families. It is only an hour and fifteen minutes long, perfect for an outing, and has something for everyone. It is nostalgic, warm and inviting. It will leave you feeling hopeful and happy and ready to really enjoy the Christmas season.”
A good story reminds us to be our best selves, and inspires us to find the best in others. “It’s a Wonderful Life, A Live Radio Show” aims to do just that. To quote Clarence, the guardian angel, “Remember, George: no man is a failure who has friends”.
The show opens *November 29th, and runs through Saturday, December 18th with performances on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 7:00 pm.
*Dec. 3: 9pm following Heber’s tree lighting ceremony and *Dec. 18: 5:00 pm and 7:00 pm