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The Scene on Stage: A holiday heart-warmer posted on 11/01/2021

Theatergoers at Sandy Actor’s Theatre’s (SAT) radio show of “Miracle on 34th Street,” opening this month, may recognize Kris Kringle. Yes, that is Santa Claus, but in this case, patrons may also recognize the performer. That would be Curt Hanson, who recently was in episodes of “Portlandia” and “Documentary Now!” and has also performed at various Portland-area theaters, but is perhaps best known as Mr. Perkins in the classic movie “The Goonies.”

Hanson plays a Santa at a department store who claims to be the real Santa, and ends up going to the Supreme Court where he gets the help from a little girl. The production is written by Lance Arthur Smith, adapted from the 1947 Lux Radio Broadcast (itself adapted from the hit movie).

“It’s a great show; very poignant in places,” Hanson said, while noting that playing Santa is a far cry from Mr. Perkins.

Director Cheryl Rudarmel Beam noted that the show will include updated, custom commercials and feature 11 actors using three microphones to create the atmosphere of a radio show. Beam noted that the actors will interact with the live audience, while the production will take all precautions to stay socially distanced.

“We want families to feel comfortable bringing their children,” she said, noting that they are not expecting to offer concessions.

Beam added that she hopes the show can bring some happiness to area families, noting the challenges of the pandemic.

“I hope they embrace the Christmas spirit this year,” she said. “I know it's been hard for all of us these last few years. At least they can enjoy a show together; it’s a very heartwarming story.”

SAT presents “Miracle on 34th Street” from Friday, Nov. 26 through Sunday, Dec. 19, at 17433 SE Meinig Avenue in Sandy (behind Ace Hardware). Show times are 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and 3 p.m. on Sundays. Tickets are $18 general admission, $13 for children and $15 for seniors, first responders, students and veterans (reservations are recommended). For more information, or to make reservations call 503-936-4378 or visit sandyactorstheatre.org.

A preview night will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 23, featuring the Wy’east Artisans Guild’s “Christmas Presents” exhibit. Tickets for the preview are $10 and only available at the door.

By Garth Guibord/MT





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