Hit show "A Tuna Christmas" returns to Springer | Arts & Culture
COLUMBUS, GA - One of Columbus' favorite holiday traditions comes back to the stage this week!
If you've never seen the Springer Opera House's production of "A Tuna Christmas," you are in for a treat.
This is the 11th season of the record breaking show. It's also the most successful theatre even in Columbus history.
This would have been the 12th season that “A Tuna Christmas” was produced by the State Theatre of Georgia, but one year they decided that people had seen enough of the hilarious comedy about Tuna, the third smallest town in Texas and its much ballyhooed Christmas yard decoration contest.
“People were furious that we weren’t doing ‘A Tuna Christmas’ in 2003, so every year since Ron Anderson and I have done it. And it has continued to sell out,” said Springer artistic director Paul Pierce.
Pierce and associate artistic director Ron Anderson play all 22 characters in “A Tuna Christmas.”
Pierce has directed more than 300 productions and acted in some 50 roles – not counting the 11 roles he portrays in “A Tuna Christmas” – in a professional career spanning 35 years (25 as the Springer’s producing artistic director). A veteran of touring before he came to the Springer, Pierce has performed in more than 1,000 American cities.
Anderson has been a professional actor, director and theatre teacher for 35 years. He has directed and played leading roles in many Springer shows, as well and directing most of the Springer Children's Theatre productions, including three of his own adaptations: “Oliviatown,” “Alice in Wonderland” and “The Little Baby Snoogle-Fleejer.” Anderson adapted “The Little Baby Snoogle-Fleejer” from Jimmy Carter’s children’s book with the permission and cooperation of the former president.
The 22 characters that Pierce and Anderson portray are in a tizzy about the mysterious Christmas Phantom, who’s vandalizing Christmas decorations and threatening Vera Carp’s chances of winning the yard-display contest for the 15th year in a row.
As in years past, “A Tuna Christmas” is directed by Ed Howard who wrote all of the Tuna comedies (“Greater Tuna,” “A Tuna Christmas,” “Red, White and Tuna,” and “Tuna Does Vegas”) with Jaston Williams and Joe Sears.
More than 35,000 people have seen “A Tuna Christmas” in Columbus. Pierce and Anderson have performed the show 137 times during which time they’ve gone through 6,302 costume changes.
The show requires two quick-change dressers to help with the amazingly fast costume changes for 22 characters. Each performance involves:
· 11 wigs, beards and mustaches
· 16 shoes and boots
· 10 pairs of glasses
· 13 hats and caps.
The quickest costume change is six seconds.
“A Tuna Christmas” runs at 7 p.m. this Thursday through Saturday and Dec. 20-22 and at 2 p.m. this Sunday and Dec.23.
Call the Box Office at 706-327-3688 for more information or for tickets or go to springeroperahouse.org.