General News

New staging of ‘A Christmas Carol’ to raise funds for Peace

November 28, 2019   ·   0 Comments

Written By MARNI WALSH

Local performer, Jeffrey Cottam, has created a brand new version of his touring rendition of  Dicken’s ‘A Christmas Carol’ in order to continue the important work of fundraising for the peace building initiatives of Partera International. 

This year, A Dickens Of An Evening will be held at Primrose United Church on December 14th at 7:30 p.m.

Based in Mono Township, Partera International  promotes the use of peace and social change to renew communities, organizations, workplaces and societies by supporting non-violent solutions. 

“In so many places in the world today, people are on the streets, protesting their government’s failure to take care of basic needs,” says founder LeeAnn McKenna, “and to safeguard their rights as human beings: Ecuador, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Hong Kong, Uganda, the Philippines, Russia, South Sudan, Bolivia, Colombia. As citizens of the same planet, their pain is ours, their suffering is ours. And in a context of climate crisis and mass migration, the need to support their struggles, to assist, with respect, in civil conflict, is paramount.”

“Partera Local is the local echo of what we are doing elsewhere in the world,” says Reverend McKenna. “To be human is to find ourselves in conflict. With these workshops, [held at Trinity United Church in Shelburne] participants have an opportunity to talk about how to effectively and skillfully deal with conflict—in our families, our workplaces, our communities;  how to make our way in a changing neighbourhood and a changing world, how to organise for social change.”

Jeff Cottam says Primrose United Church was chosen for the staging this year, “specifically because of the intimacy it will provide, bringing the audience in close proximity to the action on stage.” It does mean that seating availability will be much reduced, and the performer says, “we recommend purchasing tickets in advance – and sooner rather than later.”

This is the third season of A Dickens Of An Evening, and, although Mr. Cottam knew that he already had a winning formula, he decided to take a gamble and completely change the format of the show. LeeAnn McKenna, who is married to Jeffrey Cottam, suggested he act out the play rather than do a performance reading as in previous years.

“Memorizing over 7,000 words and doing a one-man-show is not an easy ask,” says Jeffrey Cottam, “Just ask any actor!” In addition to the over one dozen characters he embodies, his delivery of those characters must line-up with over 70 projected images, plus musical accompaniment by “maestro Bruce Ley,” and the special effects which are all woven throughout the performance. “It’s been a wonderful experience though,” he says, “I believe I have given new life to this story in a very unique way.”

Tickets for this exciting, new version of A Dickens Of An Evening are available at Trinity United Church, Shelburne – call: 519-925-2233, and from Primrose United Church, or by calling 416-436-3257 to order tickets ,which will be held at the door for pick up on the night of the show. Advance tickets are $20 for Adults and $5 dollars for students; tickets at the door are $25 for Adults and $10 for students. 

There will be figgy pudding at intermission, as well as Victorian carolers. Donations to the peace work of Partera may be made at shelburneprimrose.com/donate. Primrose United Church is located at 486281 30 Side Rd. in Mono Township – just outside of Shelburne.



         

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