Christmas play ‘This Child' to be held at NIC in December

North Idaho College Boswell Hall Schuler Auditorium Manager Justin Van Eaton enjoys the holiday season, but has grown tired of seeing the same traditional holiday classics in community theaters this time of year. He and former NIC theater director and playwright Tim Rarick talked for years about creating a production that would be a unique offering during the Christmas season.
They began to develop this project last year and it years of planning will come to fruition in December with the premiere of a full-length play titled “This Child.”
Rarick wrote the Christmas play based on a story he was told about his mother’s past.  “This Child” centers around the life of a 7-year-old girl named Moira whose family began to crumble after the stock market crash in 1929. Her father had recently passed away and her mother was fighting depression. While trudging through the streets one winter day, ill-fed and not dressed for the weather, a group of nuns decided to bring Moira into their convent and ask her to participate in their Christmas pageant, as a way of caring for the girl and helping boost her self esteem without offending her mother.
“The show emphasizes family, with a serious line of conflict running through the play as the girl’s family falls apart,” Rarick said, adding that the play is recommended for ages 5 and older. “But the Christmas pageant that provides the theme of the show helps provide a balance of interests for all ages.”
Rarick not only wrote the play, but will be directing it and co-producing it with the help of Van Eaton, the NIC Theater Department and staff of NIC’s Boswell Hall Schuler Auditorium. Community members, current NIC students and former students are also involved.
Nearly half of the cast of 25 are children who will perform some traditional Christmas carols in the course of producing the pageant. The actress who will play Rarick’s mother as a child is 8-year-old Chloe Rhodes of Newman Lake.
Rarick now lives in western Washington, but has returned to see this project through to completion. Rarick said if the play receives a positive response from the community, it will likely run for up to five years with new cast members and directors each season.
“We believe the community was wanting something new and something different, but with the same underlying themes that make a Christmas play so special to the family,” Rarick said.
Curtain time for the premier of “This Child” is 7:30 p.m. Dec. 14, 15, 16, 21, 22 and 23 in Boswell Hall Schuler Auditorium. A 2 p.m. matinee will be held Sunday, Dec. 17.
Admission is $9 for adults and $7 for children ages 5-12. Tickets can be purchased at the door or in advance at the NIC TicketQuik Box Office inside Boswell Hall.
“This Child” is supported in part by funds from the Associated Students of NIC. Admission proceeds will be directed toward the refurbishing of NIC’s Boswell Hall Schuler Auditorium, which is approaching 30 years old.
Information: (208) 769-7780.

For More Information
Former NIC Theater Director and current director of “This Child” Tim Rarick, (360) 969-0959, NIC Boswell Hall Schuler Auditorium Director Justin Van Eaton, (208) 769-3424

Posted: Monday, Nov. 27, 2006

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