A Gravenhurst Christmas Carol is returning for a second year.
Autumn Smith, who founded Timberbeast Productions, took the classic Charles Dickens’ play A Christmas Carol and put a Gravenhurst spin on it. It debuted last year during the holidays.
She explains the idea behind Timberbeast is to “re-examine or reimagine” classical works through a “Muskoka lense.”
“Everything we do has Muskoka stories embedded in it,” explains Smith. “A Gravenhurst Christmas Carol takes the original Charles Dickens piece and reimagines it from a Muskoka, specifically Gravenhurst, perspective.”
Last year the parade was held outside in Dec. starting at the Gravenhurst Public Library, past the Opera House, and towards the Trinity United Church on Muskoka Rd. N. This year the route is changing, Smith says. It will blend indoor and outdoor settings, she explains, but says where exactly it will be is a surprise. However, she does say the Opera House and Trinity United Church will be featured again.
“I’m always very conscious of the community and trying to make everyone happy and bring awesome art to the community,” says Smith. She explains the new route won’t pass by any homes to minimize potential disruptions to neighbours. “It’s a pretty interesting new route for us,” she says.
Smith says this year they will host an accessible performance on Dec. 10 at the church at 290 Muskoka Rd. N.
The outdoor performances will be held on Dec. 7 to 11 and 14 to 17, all at 7 PM. Tickets cost $25 in advance or $30 at the door. The Dec. 11 performance is pay what you can. Smith says proceeds of the performances will be going to Gravenhurst Against Poverty (GAP). Tickets can be purchased online.
Last year, $1,000 was donated to GAP.
“The people with the Town of Gravenhurst have been amazing,” says Smith. She jokes town staff probably thought she was “off her head” when she first started. “What? Wandering theatre? How bizarre.”
However, since first hosting A Gravenhurst Christmas Carol, the relationship between Timberbeast and the town has grown. “Massive shoutout to them for taking a risk and supporting arts and culture,” says Smith.