Urbana’s new black-box theatre, the “Perennial Theatre Company,” will host a holiday celebration and play from 2-4 p.m. Dec. 12 at the theatre’s 240 Patrick Ave. location.
Dubbed “Christmas in The Box,” the free, family-friendly event will feature Christmas-themed crafts, caroling, activities, and refreshments for kids of all ages. A free presentation of Joe Landry’s “It’s a Wonderful Life – A Live Radio Play” will follow at 4:30 p.m. This unique play gives audiences a behind-the-scenes peek into what a live radio show looked like during the golden age of radio. Tickets are free; however, seating is limited so guests are encouraged to reserve tickets by calling 937-896-1511.
The Perennial’s founding members and “Christmas in The Box” coordinators are Kohl King and 2010 Tecumseh High School graduate Mercedes Dagnan. They say they look forward to bringing this and other arts-centered community events into the Perennial Theatre Company.
“I grew up in New Carlisle, and Kohl and I took part in Urbana University’s Theatre Department, so we both saw a need for performing arts opportunities in rural areas,” Dagnan said. According to King and Dagnan, they chose Urbana for the Perennial Theatre’s location because it is close to family and is in the heart of a large rural area. The location also provides a broad base from which to draw talent; for example, cast and crew members for “It’s a Wonderful Life – A Live Radio Play” hail from Springfield, Urbana and New Carlisle.
The Perennial Theatre Company will “specialize in bringing art events and unique live productions into the surrounding region so audiences might get a better understanding of humanity and, possibly, even themselves,” King said. King and Dagnan both feel “Christmas in The Box” and “It’s a Wonderful Life—A Live Radio Program” help fulfill these goals.
Enthusiastic support from area sponsors and dedicated volunteers have played an important role in making the Perennial Theatre Company a reality. Its founders say the “Christmas in The Box” event is just the first example of how the theatre will also give back to the communities it hopes to serve.
For more information about reserving tickets or getting involved in the Perennial Theatre Company, visit the “Perennial Theatre” Facebook page or call 937-896-1511.
Charidy Murphy is a volunteer and actor with the “Christmas in The Box” event.