new tradition for Auburn A CHILD'S CHRISTMAS IN WALES

Friday/Saturday/Sunday Dec. 11th-20th, 2009


A new tradition for Auburn

Review by Tom Woods, Special to the Citizen
Grade: A

“When I wrote last year that I hoped the Auburn
Public Theater would make “A Child’s Christmas in
Wales” an annual event, I thought perhaps that its
creators would allow the theater to mount the play on
its own. I didn’t expect Polly Hogan and Ron Ritchell
to bring it back themselves. Hogan and Ritchell, together
with APT co-founder Carey Eidel and local actor Dave Tobin,
are reunited for another round of the play running…
this December the downtown theater.
For those who missed this extraordinary event
last year, “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” is an
adaptation by Hogan taken from the writings of Dylan
Thomas. Her script is absolutely marvelous, weaving
Thomas’ poetry and narrative together brilliantly and
creating a work that is evocative and emotive. The
unusual effect of this play is not that it takes you
back so vividly to the Swansea Christmases of Thomas’
youth, but to your own.
The performances are just as good as the
material, with Hogan and Ritchell in a variety of
roles and Tobin and Eidel as Thomas and his friend Jim
at a variety of ages. Ritchell is superb in every
detail, particularly effective opening and closing the
show with Thomas’ poetry. Hogan is a joy as an
assortment of mothers, aunts and spinsters, all
clearly delineated and unique, each familiar and
Eidel is masterful as Jim, delivering a detailed
and consistent performance, using traits of the boy to
inform the actions of the man. Whether hunting cats in
the snow or passing judgment on his fellow villagers
he is completely believable.
Tobin tightens what was a good performance last
year, finding more detail and comfort as Thomas. He,
too, uses the youngster to help create the man but has
the additional burden of commentator. His transitions
between narration and character are much smoother now,
and his work throughout is more confident and
The technical aspects of the production show
improvement as well. There is more and better
lighting and some additions to the set that help both
the look and the flow.
There is nothing objectionable for families, but
some of the material may not hold the attention of
very young children.”
Auburn Public Theater
108 Genesee Street
Auburn, New York 13021
(315) 253-6669

General Information

Artistic Producing Director: Angela Daddabbo

Managing Director: Carey Eidel

Acting Classes, Volunteer Co-ordinator , House Manager – Janie MicGlire

Construction/Physical Space: Brian Anderson

Art Galley Curator: Diane Bauso

Theater Rental: Carey Eidel