‘North Pole Star’ opens Friday

Published 10:50 am Monday, November 27, 2023

By Fiona Morgan


Local children and adults spanning all ages are coming together to put on “North Pole Star” at West T. Hill Community Theater, opening Friday.

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Show dates are Dec. 1-3, 8-10. Friday and Saturday shows start at 7:30 p.m. and the Sunday matinee begins at 3 p.m. Tickets are available at westthill.net.

The show, by Sally Albrecht and Jay Althouse, is about a singing competition held at the North Pole. Fashioned after shows like American Idol, eight reindeer compete to be the next North Pole Star.

Director of the show Beth Marlowe said it’s a big show for West T. Hill, with 28 people in the cast. Kids from Danville and Boyle County schools, Danville Christian Academy, and some from surrounding counties are all working with adult professionals, teachers, and community members.

Some of the case includes Chris Sparrow as Santa and Maggie Jenkins as Mrs. Claus, who will be judges of the competition along with Jonah Cline as Steven Cruelle. Cassidy Moss and Lilla Walter are announcers of “North Pole Star.” High Schooler Nick Powell plays the producer of the competition, and young actor Brooks Johnson plays Rudolph.

Eight young actors play the competing reindeer, and 11 young actors are their background performers, or ‘star singers.’

After each reindeer performs their act, the audience will vote on the winner, with a different winner each night. Marlowe explained that they are charging $1 per vote to raise money for a new roof at West T. Hill. She said they’re calling the fundraiser “Raise the Roof for Santa.”

“After Covid, many of the sets struggled to get back on their feet, and this is just an added way to try to support the theater’s current need in a fun, creative way that won’t break the bank for anyone,” Marlowe said. “I’m hoping it will be an ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ moment and the community will come out and support the theater and show how important it is to this community.”

Marlowe said local businesses are also supporting the show, including Plaid Elephant Books and Farmers Bank. They also partnered with Dry Stack Coffee, who made a hot chocolate drink inspired by the show called “Mint to be a Star.”

“What’s great about this script is the authors give you liberty to add commercials or enhance things a bit,” Marlowe said. “We have small commercials set to familiar carols that are woven throughout the show.”

Marlowe said the theater has done “North Pole Star” once before, and it was a big hit with audiences. She said people will enjoy seeing the kids perform, and as a one-hour show, it should be easy to fit in a busy schedule.

“These kids are super cute; for many it’s their very first show ever,” Marlowe said. “It’s also not very long. So many people struggle with scheduling all types of things during this time of year. With a show this length, it’s easy to fit it. It’s just about an hour. It’s like coming for a quick infusion of Christmas cheer.”

The cast list is:

Santa – Chris Sparrow

Mrs. Claus – Maggie Jenkins

Vickie Snowcrest – Cassidy Moss

Nickie Snowcrest – Lilla Walter

Producer – Nick Powell

Rudolph – Brooks Johnson

Steven Cruelle – Jonah Cline

• The “Slay” Belles:

Kaylee Bloyd – Megan Prather

Tara Strauch – Candace Wentz

• Star Singers:

Annabelle Bastin, Alice Wentz, Aspen Jackson, Millie Morris, Mary Moss, Willow Snyder, Molly Neyhouse, Peak Price-Hancock, McKenzy Neyhouse, Eden Mebrahtu, Tatum Smith.

• Reindeer:

Dasher – Ethan Sparrow

Dancer – Henley Prather

Prancer – Anna Wade

Vixen – Reia Frey

Comet – Aaron Gorley

Cupid – Marcus Strauch

Donner – Alex Rowland

Blitzen – Joshua Moss