EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

November 28, 2012

More noteworthy entertainment

The Eagle-Tribune

---- — Breaking Her Silence

Twenty-year photojournalist Deb Cram turns the camera on herself in her new show, “Click,” a story of domestic violence and child abuse. Directed by author, playwright and Eagle-Tribune freelance writer Lars Trodson, Cram’s work arose from an ordinary assignment for the Portsmouth Herald at Sexual Assault Support Services.

“As I listened to Det. Rick Labell of the Raymond Police Department share his story of family alcohol and sexual abuse, saying he uses his knowledge and experience to help kids who are abused, I thought I might be able to do the same thing,” Cram says in a story appearing on seacoastonline.com.

“I got in my car, found a scrap piece of paper and started writing.”

The results were a series of written images from her childhood published in column form in the May 18 Portsmouth Herald, entitled “We Need to Talk About Abuse.” Each memory begins with the word “Click”:

“Click,” she writes, “I saw him at the end of the driveway in the dark. He was holding his rifle and as he took a drag on his cigarette, I could see the bright red embers glowing. As he paced and waited for my mother to return home, I prayed she would never come. She didn’t that night.”

Trodson helped Cram embellish the piece and adapt it to the stage. The show will be performed as part of ScreenWright Playhouse’s first season on Tuesday, Dec. 4 at 7:30 p.m. at Seacoast Repertory Theatre. Cram encourages audience participation in her monologue and Q&A that follows.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online at www.seacoastrep.org or by calling 433-4472. Proceeds benefit SASS, A Safe Place and PPMtv.

Laugh, laugh and

laugh some more

If you want to laugh you can take your pick of three solid acts around the region this weekend.

Kelly MacFarland of Comedy Central fame joins Graig Murphy, comedy voices from WEEI and Maine comic Johnny Ater on Friday at 8 p.m. at the Holy Grail, 64 Main St., Epping. Tickets are $15. Call the Holy Grail, 603-679-9559.

The following night at 8 p.m. at the Portsmouth Pearl, 45 Pearl St., Portsmouth, Frank Santorelli (”Las Vegas,” “Comedy Central,” and “The Sopranos,”) takes the stage with Boston headliner Mitch Stinson and Kennedy Richard. Tickets are $15 in advance through Pay Pal via the Pearl website, http://www.portsmouthpearl.com, or $15 cash on show night.

Santorelli also makes a stop at the famed Stone Church in Newmarket on Saturday, Dec. 1 at 10 p.m. He’ll be joined by Boston headliner Mike Prior (Comedy Central, MTV). Tickets are $12 in advance through www.stonechurchrocks.com or $15 night of the show.

‘Messiah and More’ at Merrimack College

For the third year, Merrimack Valley residents won’t have to make the trek to Boston to experience “Messiah” performed by professional musicians.

New England Classical Singers present “Messiah and More,” consisting of Act 1 of George Friderick Handel’s cherished oratio, as well as the “Hallelujah Chorus” from Act 2. The event is at the Rogers Center for the Arts at Merrimack College in Andover on Saturday at 7 p.m.

“For people who like the ‘Messiah’ and like this type of performance, it’s a wonderful way to start out the holiday season,” said Ann O’Connell of Bradford, development chair and a longtime member of New England Classical Singers.

O’Connell said the organization is at the end of a three-year plan to produce “Messiah” annually, as a “signature concert” for the group. The group hopes concert-goers and sponsors will lend enough support to continue each year.

“We feel this is a piece of holiday music that should be done well, so we decided that we should have it performed every year,” she said. “It is not performed at this level anywhere north of Boston that we know of.”

Joining the 25-member auditioned choral group will be several soloists. An audience carol sing and reception follows the concert.

An andover ‘NUTCRACKER’ at Phillips Academy

The Phillips Academy Department of Theatre and Dance brings “The Nutcracker” to life, directed and choreographed by Judith Wombwell. This is the first time the ballet has been performed at the academy since 2008.

Wombwell re-imagined the setting to represent Colonial Andover ,with mice and soldiers becoming Revolutionary War figures and party guests celebrating in the Abbot barn, designed and constructed by faculty member Bruce Bacon.

Clara’s journey through the Christmas tree into the Land of Sweets remains true to the original ballet in its timeless story of a child’s fantasy. The show includes several guest artists. The role of Clara is shared by seniors Madeline Silva, captain of the Andover Dance Group, and Rochelle Wilbun. The Snow King and Queen are danced by Graham Johns and Marion Kudla, respectively. The Grand Pas de Deux will be performed by guest artists and Boston Ballet soloists Dalay Parrondo and Brad Schlagheck, in the featured roles of the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier.

The Nutcracker will be performed in Tang Theatre on the Phillips Academy campus, Friday, Nov. 30 at 8 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 1 at 2:30 and 8 p.m., and Sunday, Dec. 2 at 2 p.m. Admission is $20 for general public and $10 for Phillips Academy community. Tickets can be reserved by calling the Phillips Academy box office at (978) 749-4433.

Samuel’s restaurant at the Andover Inn will offer specially created, holiday prix-fixe menu for theatre patrons. The three course meal is value priced at $35 per person and will be available both before and after The Nutcracker performances. Reservations, recommended, can be made by calling 978-775-4910.