Unlike Charles Dickens’ iconic humbugger Scrooge, Diane Namm is a woman who can sleep well on Christmas Eve knowing she’s gone more than the extra mile to serve her fellow man—especially the children. The native New Yorker, filmmaker, playwright and author of 55 children’s books and young adult novels, is bringing “Mrs. Scrooge,” her adaptation of “A Christmas Carol,” to the Edgemar Center for the Arts and the Write/Act Theatre.
“Our goal is for every child in Los Angeles to be able to see live theatre and walk away loving it,” Namm says. With her West of Broadway Theatre Company, she has adapted numerous classic works, turned them into interactive theatre and brought them to young audiences who otherwise might never have been exposed to them. The effects have sometimes been amazing. She tells the story of a group of special needs students at Fremont High School who had been struggling to finish “12 Angry Men” before graduation. Namm brought them to her production at The Los Angeles Theatre Centre and, for two hours, they sat spellbound. The following week, when their teacher had to leave the classroom for a few moments, the teacher came back to find that the students had rearranged their chairs like the jury room in the play, and were vigorously debating the verdict.
“Mrs. Scrooge” promises to engage and delight young audiences with a chance to decide the outcome of Dickens’ classic tale, and even participate in a snowball fight with teen angels.
“Mrs. Scrooge” performs Saturdays at 3 pm and Sundays at 2 pm December 6–20 at the Edgemar Center for the Arts (2437 Main St. in Santa Monica). Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children under 12. The show is also available to school groups during weekdays at Write/Act Theater (6128 Yucca St. in Hollywood). To learn more or for group tickets, go to www.westofbroadway.org or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.