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A front-stage comedy

Adapted from the play by Albert Smith
and the novella by Charles Dickens
with additional dialogue from the play by Dion Boucicault
and even more additional dialogue by David Jacklin

It is dress rehearsal and the last chance for a group of community performers to get their new production of The Cricket On The Hearth right.  Of course, the chances of that happening are vanishingly small.

For starters, Cricket is a last minute replacement show and most of the company still want to do the other show that got cancelled: you know, the funny one.  All but one hate Dickens, anyway.

From performers who don’t know their lines to technicians who can’t find the right cue to a set that won’t cooperate, it’s enough to drive a well-meaning director to distraction.

And where’s May?  It’s the dress rehearsal; she should be here!  It just doesnt' work when the stage manager has to read in her lines!

There are plenty of "back-stage" comedies, but this is a "front-stage" one, as the long-suffering director sits in or prowls around or stomps out of the house, while the rehearsal unfolds.

Of course, it all comes out right, in the end – but
getting there is ALL the fun!
Above: A split scene, as an exterior and an interior set divide the stage for the end of Act One.
Below: It all ends happily with a Dickens dance, as Bertha plays the harp. December 2012

The final dance
Good evening, Unbeknown.
Joe Laxton, Nadia Grogan, Brady Johnson (twice). December 2012
Based on the official Dickens-approved stage adaptation, this is something completely different – but completely Dickens – for Christmas!

Which amateur company are performing this play?  Well, considering that the names of the actors on the stage (and the director and the stage manager and the technician) are the names of the actors on the stage (and the director and the stage manager and the technician), there's a bit of reality-bending here.  Is this a play about a rehearsal or a rehearsal of a play?  Honestly, it's like the author just took the actual events of a dress rehearsal and made a play out of it -- but that couldn't happen, could it?
2 acts; 6 male / 6 female / piano or recorded accompaniment
1 ext. and 2 int. sets (which are all part of one set)

Musical Numbers
The Cricket On The Hearth
The Glasses Sparkle On The Board
White Wings