COLUMBIA — Sierra Rep Theatre is bringing back their original holiday drama, The Christmas Foundling, playing Nov. 19 through Dec. 18 at the Fallon House Theatre in Columbia State Historic Park.
Created specifically for the historic Fallon House Theatre, the show charmed audiences when it debuted in 2001, then again in 2003 and 2011, drawing some of the largest crowds SRT had seen for a non-musical production.
Emmy Award-winning playwright Norman Allen penned the story of young Tom, a boy born and orphaned on Christmas Eve at the remote cabin of two Gold Rush miners — Hoke and Old Jake.
They take Tom in and over the years the lad binds a loose-knit group of loners and misfits together into a family.
But one night that all changes with the arrival of a Boston woman who is searching for lost family members and all those who love the boy must come to grips with difficult questions about his future. Allen specializes in writing historical plays. His work on the East Coast has earned him nationally recognized honors, including the Charles MacArthur Award, the Helen Hayes Award for Best New Play and an Emmy for a Public Broadcasting System television documentary.
For Foundling, he took the Bret Harte story, "The Luck of Roaring Camp," as his inspiration, then moved the tale to 10 years later.
The production is directed by Scott Viets. Scenic design by David Goldstein, costume design by Diana Newington, lighting design by Jonnie Painter, sound design by Tatiana Covington-Parra, hair and make-up design by Brenda O’Brien, arrangements and accompaniment by John Jay Espino, and props by Alicia Dooley. The dialect coach is Kimily Conkle, and the stage manager is Joanna Hobbs.
“I’ve admired this show for many, many years,” says Viets. “It has been a pleasure to explore it as a director with this exceptional cast. This is a new production of an SRT favorite but there are still touchstones that harken back to our original productions. I’ve been looking forward to this project all year and it does not disappoint.”
The Foundling cast includes Gary Holman and Ty Smith, reprising their roles and Hoke and Old Jake.
The production also stars a cast of SRT favorites: Courtney Glass, Matt Alpert, Gabriel Rodrigues, Drew Boudreau, and Asher Berg as Tom. The understudies are John Jay Espino, Laurie Strawn, and Kason Zenger.
The show opens Nov. 19 at 7 p.m. and will be followed by an Opening Night Celebration.
Regular performance times are Wednesdays at noon, Thursdays at 2 p.m., Fridays at 7 p.m., Saturdays at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., and Sundays at 2 p.m. through Dec 18.
No show on Thursday, Nov. 24; added show at 2 p.m. Friday, Nov. 25.
SRT is also presenting Elf The Musical at the East Sonora Theatre through Dec 18.
For more information about Sierra Repertory Theatre, visit www.SierraRep.org or call the Box Office at (209) 532-3120. Follow Sierra Repertory Theatre on Instagram at @SierraRep; and on Facebook at Facebook.com/SierraRep.
SRT operates out of two theaters located in East Sonora and in Historic Columbia State Park in Northern California.
The East Sonora Theatre is located at 13891 Mono Way, Sonora. The Historic Fallon House Theatre is located at 11175 Washington St. in Columbia. Both theaters are air-conditioned and ADA accessible.