Propel student joins CLO cast
The Christmas season is steeped in traditions, and for many that includes a visit to the Byham Theater in December for Civic Light Opera's production of “A Musical Christmas Carol.”
The show opens Friday and continues weekends through Dec. 22.
The cast includes long-time favorites Tom Atkins as Scrooge, Tim Hartman as Mr. Fezziwig/Ghost of Christmas Present, Jeffrey Howell as Bob Cratchit, Daniel Krell as Marley's Ghost/Young Marley, Amanda Serra as Ghost of Christmas Past, and Terry Wickline as Mrs. Fezziwig/Mrs. Dilber.
A newcomer to the show is 11-year-old Jonathan Parker, who plays the Turkey Boy and a Cratchit child.
“This is very exciting,” the sixth-grader at Propel East Charter School in Turtle Creek said. “I have a friend who was in the show last year.”
Although this is his first professional show, Parker most recently was in the CLO Academy's production of “The Little Mermaid Jr.” He also played a Who in his school's production of “Seussical Jr.”
It was at the academy that he learned about auditions for “Carol.”
“There was a signup sheet for auditions. My audition was 4 p.m. on Friday and I was called back on Sunday,” Parker said. “Two weeks later on a Friday my mom told me I got the part and I was so happy.”
One reason he likes the show is its message.
“When the three spirits meet Scrooge, it's a good reminder of the meaning of Christmas,” he said.
His favorite scene is the Christmas party at the Fezziwigs' home. “It is so upbeat and it just makes me want to dance. That scene is a lot of fun,” the young performer said.
Looking forward to opening night, Parker said he will be nervous.
“I keep thinking about it, but the director does a really good job in helping us not to be nervous. The actors give us a lot of advice and they are always thinking about the kids and taking us under their wings. It's amazing,” he said.
Parker said his interest in the theater was sparked when he was 5.
“My family and I went to see ‘Lion King' at the Benedum Center and I thought it would be so cool to sing and dance for a million people,” he explained.
Taking the advice of one of his acting instructors, Parker studies jazz, tap and ballet.
Hoping to pursue a career in musical theater, he said his dream is to perform in “Phantom.” “I think it would be so cool to be in that show.”
He hopes theater-goers will leave the Byham “wondering how they did that in just a few weeks of rehearsal. I hope they say ‘Wow, they did such a good job' and the director hears it and is happy.”
Carol Waterloo Frazier is an editor for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Mon-Yough area first responders say drivers need to stop, pull over
- Clairton schools honor alumni in mentoring program
- Vigil marks 6-year anniversary of Clairton coach’s death
- Closed Bottom Dollars in Homestead, McKeesport to become Aldi stores
- County 911 to provide Elizabeth police with records system
- West Mifflin Area to sue for tuition reimbursement
- Wrestling up-and-comers to strut their stuff at PWX Wrestleplex
- Elizabeth Forward senior builds his own canoe in school’s lab
- Hearing delayed in North Versailles attempted homicide case
- Mon-Yough area candidates bumped off ballots vow to fight on
- Steel Valley union drops restroom grievance