MARK TWAIN Opens This Weekend for Three Performances Only

by RoxyRegionalTheatre on October 21, 2011

It’s bad enough that our local dollar store has had Halloween stuff out since August. But when I commented on the plethora of Halloween, Thanksgiving and even Christmas stuff filling up the shelves, a cashier said perkily, “It’s just around the corner.”

“No!” I said, “Halloween is around the corner. Thanksgiving is way down the block, and Christmas isn’t even in town yet.” This did not sit well with the cashier.

Yesterday I saw city workers wrapping downtown trees with strings of Christmas lights … what? In October? I see far too many workers spending weeks twisting strings of lights around tree limbs and then, after the holiday, as much if not more time removing them, even into March. I don’t know what the cost would be for flood lights at the base of the trees, but I’m sure the whole cost could be covered in one day’s wages of a Christmas tree trimmer.

Don’t get me wrong — I’m not a Christmas curmudgeon. I just think there must be a more efficient, if not more economical, way to light up downtown and a better way to spend the city street department’s time. We need the ambiance of light most especially in the bleak, cold, wet, snowy days of January and February. We are lightless then, when we need light most. Of course, the City Forrester would be the best judge of whether a flood light at the base or twisting strands of lights would be better.

Ralph Conklin came by to deliver our new and improved guillotine. Yes, we have a guillotine … doesn’t everyone? I use mine on recalcitrant actors.

The original was invented by Dr. Joseph Ignace Guillotin, who unfortunately was also one of its victims. Ours was built by the late Gene Wolf, who for years built period phones, period microphones, halberds for Man of La Mancha, swords for our Henry V, and everything in between.

The guillotine that Gene Wolf created was artfully deadly at its height of six feet, but I’ve been rethinking its value to the Dickens’ classic and thought it should be more imposing, perhaps twice as high. It is in the MGM classic and is now for the Roxy’s revival of A Tale of Two Cities, opening Friday, November 4, at 8pm. Thank you, Ralph.

Ashton Crosby returns to the Roxy in the revival of Mark Twain: Adventures in American Humor, this time around joined by Cary Hite and Carl Howell in telling the hilarious antics of Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn and many other Twain characters. This trio has been performing school matinees all week and now presents three public performances tonight at 8pm and Saturday at 2pm and 8pm.

Field trips to The War of the Worlds, A Tale of Two Cities and A Christmas Carol are still available for booking by contacting the box office at or (931)645-7699.

Auditions for the Cratchit children in A Christmas Carol are Monday, October 24, at 5pm.

See you at the theatre!

[John McDonald]

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