Quote of the Day: Strange, isn’t it? Each man’s life touches so many other lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole, doesn’t he? Clarence in Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life, playing now at Stage North in Brainerd, MN.

Wonderful Life Choir. Photo by Katie Seipp Deblock

Wonderful Life Choir. Photo by Katie Seipp Deblock

My sister Joy Ciaffoni and I once again have the privilege of directing the children’s choir for Stage North‘s holiday production. We provide pre-show music, sing at intermission, and come in for a brief scene in Act II, and the curtain call. We have 11 girls in the choir this year, another wonderful crew to work with. It is especially fun to see them interact as we’re waiting downstairs in the old school cafeteria where they’re drawing murals together, playing games, and building friendships. Our song list this year has some fun tunes like “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” “Snake for Christmas,” and sentimental favorites like “White Christmas,” where Joy sings a lovely solo and the girls join her for the second verse. That’s my favorite part of the show! We were able to watch the tech rehearsal, and from what we saw, it’s well acted and staged. Kevin Yeager plays George with actions and body language, and accent, that are quite convincing. Mark Liedl plays cranky old Mr. Potter to perfection. Of course, George Bailey’s kids steal the show when they’re on. That little Lauren Yeager inherited her dad’s acting gene! 

It’s a Wonderful Life has always been my favorite holiday show. It’s not all happy “aren’t we a perfect family” kind of story. In fact, it has melancholy undertones. George thinks he’s a failure. First, he didn’t purse his childhood dreams of traveling the world, going to college, and living a big life. Instead, he found himself trapped in Bedford Falls, running the family business, married and raising four kids. Then, the business is in danger of collapsing. He thinks he’s better off dead than alive. Enter the angel in training, Clarence, who points out how much George has touched the lives of all those around him. He is indeed valuable to them, not because of his accomplishments or wealth, but because of his generous and giving spirit, his love for his family, and concern for his community. 

We have three shows remaining in the run. Saturday at 2:00 and 7:30, and Sunday at 2:00. Visit Stage North website for more details, or visit their Facebook page, call for tickets 218-232-6810, or come early and purchase your tickets at the door. Both Thursday and Friday performances were full, not quite sold out, but a good house. The audience seemed to really enjoy the performance! Thank you to everyone who has come to the show and supported community theatre! 

Happy Holidays!

Go. Create. Inspire!

Journaling Prompt: Do you have a favorite holiday story? What gets you blue during the holidays? How do you share the holiday spirit?