Theater companies offer holiday entertainment

By Sheena Barnett/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – The Christmas spirit is everywhere, even on the stage.
Just about every November or early December, audiences can expect a holiday show from Pied Piper and Tupelo Community Theatre.
A Christmas play isn’t always on the program at TCT, but sometimes the last play of the year will feature some kind of holiday theme.
“We’d have a holiday show, but it was the weekend before Thanksgiving, so it didn’t necessarily have a Christmas theme,” said director Tom Booth. “But through the 42 years we’ve had Christmas shows, and many years the Christmas productions were also educational shows, like this year.”
This season, TCT produced “A Christmas Story,” based on the classic 1983 film about a little boy named Ralphie who wants a B.B. gun for Christmas. The theater invited students to see the play and gave them study guides about the play’s themes.
“Eight hundred students and teachers took advantage of that,” Booth said.
The play sold out at nearly every performance, too.
In the past few years, TCT’s holiday shows include “A Tuna Christmas” and “The Man Who Came to Dinner,” which is set at Christmastime.
Over at Pied Piper, the play this year was the British comedy “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” based on the song. In the play, a little girl’s boyfriend wins the lottery and gives her each of the gifts from the song.
“There’s a whole lot of humor and not a lot of American tradition,” said director Jane Miller.
Past Pied Piper holiday shows include “Babes in Toyland” and “Twas the Night Before Christmas.”
sheena.barnett@journalinc.com