Woodward, Okla. —
The OnStage Woodward theater group is getting in the holiday spirit and putting on a play entitled "The Christmas Toyshop."
As the title implies, Director Deanna Nielsen said, "The play is about Santa and his elves setting up a toy shop."
According to Nielsen, one of the highlights of the play will be its rich and interesting characters, most of whom are played by talented young actors and actresses ranging in age from 7 to 17.
"There's a couple of orphans, Michael played by Miknail Sample, and Jennifer, Michael's sister, played by Shawna Adams. Then there's a real snooty lady named Mrs. Wellington, played by Christina Thompson, and Wellington's two children, Wilbur played by Maia Wright, and Wilhelmina played by Madelene Eilers, who want everything but don't believe in Santa. Jennifer believes in Santa, but Michael struggles with his belief, and I think that makes the play really interesting," Nielsen said.
In addition to the human characters, Nielsen said the play also features some fantastical ones.
"We have talking toys which the kids will love, including a toy soldier named General La Bouche Boucle Lafitte played by Kerrick Dougherty, he's quite a character. There's a Swedish music box doll played by Alex Moore, and a Jack-in- the-box that does not like its box at all played by Kennedi von Biedenfeld whose also trying to stay out of her box crying things like 'No, no, I won't go in there, you cant make me!' It's great," Nielsen said.
Also making appearances in the play will be Janis Thompson, Natalie Yadon, Blayre von Biedenfeld, Amber von Biedenfeld, Krysta von Biedenfeld, Harley Sample, Hannah Eilers, Emily Lintner, and Seth Lintner who will be portraying various animals, toys and/or townspeople.
And of course Mr. Nicholas S. Claus will be making an appearance, played by Caleb Lewis, along with his elf helper Nix played by Brittani von Biedenfeld.
"After each play kids will have an opportunity to come get their picture taken with Santa," Nielsen said.
She encouraged area families to include a performance of "The Christmas Toyshop" in their holiday plans.
"It will be a fun night of local talent and entertainment, as well as a unique way of believing in Santa. The message of the play, in a way, is that Santa is more in our hearts than at the North Pole," Nielsen said. "It's magical."
"The Christmas Toyshop" is slated for 4 performances at the Woodward Arts Theatre next weekend. The first performance will be on Dec. 7 at 7 p.m., two performances will be held on Dec. 8 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., and the final performance will be held on Dec. 9 at 2 p.m.
Tickets can be bought prior to the play at the Woodward Arts Theater or at the door. The theater is located at 818 Main St. You can also call the theater at (580) 256-7120 to reserve tickets.