Abrams troupe to present timeless Christmas show

‘Meet Me in St. Louis’ to be staged in December

Joan Koehne Special to the Leader

Photo by Joan Koehne Music and dancing are key elements in the Abrams Spotlight Productions Inc. performance of “Meet Me in St. Louis.” Rehearsing the song “Skip to My Lou” are performers, front row from left, Tim Rutten, Janet Koehne, Preston Pelegrin, and Kelly Klein, and back row, Ellie Finger, Brooke LeMense and Josie Sieber.

Abrams Spotlight Productions Inc. will perform a rare, old-school gem, “Meet Me in St. Louis,” to be performed the first two weekends of December at the Byng Community Theater.

The plot follows the lives of the middle-class Smith family as they journey through comedic misunderstandings, jovial pranks, love, and hardship surrounding the 1904 World’s Fair.

With music and lyrics by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane and book by Hugh Wheeler, this production was adapted from a 1944 film of the same title starring Judy Garland.

“Although it is an older show and therefore has the stigma of being old-fashioned and out-of date, because of the relatability of the struggle of the family, it really is timeless,” said director Liz Jolly.

The heartwarming musical captures the feelings of love, hope, and family togetherness that surround Christmas. The famous song, “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” made its debut in the original movie and is sung by Megan Mertens as Esther in the Abrams production.

“The best things about Christmas are portrayed and are central to this show,” Jolly said.

Incorporated in the Broadway-style set are the interior and exterior of a Victorian house, a ballroom, and a glimpse of the World’s Fair. Plus, there’s a working trolley for the memorable “Trolley Song.”

Performing in the show are Megan Mertens, Janet Koehne, Hayden Blau, Preston Pelegrin, Tim Rutten, Josh Blau, Bill Koehne, KK Blau, Sydney Surber, Peggy Sopata, Julie Muenster. Jim Klein, Kelly Klein, Ellie Finger, Betsy Finger, Olivia Shelly, Audryn Just, Josie Sieber, Victoria Athey, Brooke LeMense and James Sopata. Ali Carlson is the assistant director.

Abrams Spotlight Productions Inc. will celebrate opening night on Dec. 1, with a gala after the show. The audience is invited to enjoy complimentary hors d’oeuvres and drinks with the cast and crew after the performance.

Performances continue on 7 p.m. Dec. 8, 1 and 7 p.m. Dec. 2 and Dec. 9, and 1 p.m. Dec. 3 and Dec. 10. All shows will be performed at the Byng Community Theater, 5852 Maple St., Abrams.

Tickets are $14 for adults, $12 for ages 65 and older and 5-17 and $7 for children 4 and under. Tickets can be purchased online at www.AbramsTheatre.com or by calling the box office at 920-826-5852.

“Meet Me in St. Louis” is presented by arrangement with Tams Witmark Music Library Inc.