Provo Theatre Company creates holiday tradition

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    By Christopher Graham

    The ?Forgotten Carols,? a play with music written by LDS composer Michael McLean and adapted for the stage by his son Scott McLean, will be brought back to the Provo Theatre Company this holiday season for the second year in a row.

    The play tells the story of Constance Chamberlain, a nurse who struggles with issues from her past and has forgotten the importance of Christmas. She gains a new understanding of the holiday through her patient John as he tells her the stories of the Christmas carols that have been lost or forgotten to history.

    McLean originally conceived the program as a one-man show, but last year it was adapted and shown as a play for the first time and debuted at the Provo Theatre Company. This new version introduces two new characters to the story and also adds to the background of Constance.

    Ben Hess, the stage manager of the production, said this play should not be confused as a musical. Instead it?s more like a play that happens to have songs in it. He said these songs are more reflective and don?t further the plot like the songs in musicals do. He said these songs live on their own and also add to the unique nature of the show.

    ?With the ?Forgotten Carols? people will get a new kind of Christmas story,? Hess said. ?This play will help people look at their family and look at the season in a new and better way.?

    Dave Tinney, who returns to the role of John for the second year, said he hopes this play will become the Provo Theatre?s new Christmas tradition. He said many people feel that Christmas isn?t complete without seeing the Nutcracker or visiting Santa Clause at the mall and he hopes this play will become another seasonal activity that families will come back to each year.

    ?Christmas is about tradition,? said Tinney, who is also the artistic director of the Provo Theatre Company. ?The Christmas [season] lets us look back at the year and see what we can do better. This show tells us the purpose of the season; it is because of Christmas we have the opportunity to change.?

    Tinney it?s incredible to see the effect the play has on different people. He said he hopes audiences will be entertained and moved in some way during the performance and that the experience will set the stage for a really good Christmas for them.

    The ?Forgotten Carols? is performed nightly at 7:30 pm at the Provo Theatre Company and will continue through December 23. Ticket prices range from $12.50 to $15 with discounts available for large groups. For more information call 801-379-0600 or go to www.provotheatrecompany.com.

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