“The show must go on” has never been more apt.
Christina Penhale and Jeffrey Renn were well underway with rehearsals of their holiday production, The Jeff and Chrissy Show, when the province’s latest health directive again closed ArtSpring down on Nov. 19.
With the directive slated to end on Dec. 7, and the popular four-date run starting on Dec. 10, the team was left with a huge amount of uncertainty whether they should continue at all. But ArtSpring’s executive and artistic director, Cicela Månsson, chose to keep the hope alive and asked Penhale and Renn to carry on with their preparation.
In the meantime, ArtSpring’s technical director, Malcolm Harris, looked into other ways to present the show. Live performance with an audience in the house had been the preferable route since the centre reopened in October, but the abrupt cancellation of recent shows by Harry Manx, Swing Shift and the Makana Youth Choir meant it was time to consider other options.
With the current prohibition on public gatherings now extended until Jan. 8, 2021, The Jeff and Chrissy Show WILL go on, with four livestream performances, at the same date and time of the original shows: Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 10-12 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 13 at 2:30 p.m.
Tickets ($20 for a link that everyone in a household can access) are available here.
If patrons prefer to call they can leave a message on the box office phone at 250-537-2102 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The production — an evening of holiday nostalgia inspired by classic Christmas radio specials, such as the George Burns and Gracie Allen show — has seen a last-minute change in band personnel, bringing in Michael Iurincic and Geoff McFarlane. Ever positive, Penhale describes the current situation as “a transformative, go with the flow process.”
Ticket holders of the live shows that were cancelled will be contacted.
ArtSpring’s box office is currently closed to in-person visits, but phone messages are picked up daily.