“The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” a delightful family story about the true meaning of Christmas, will close the fall season for the West Liberty University Hilltop Players. The show runs at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 30, Dec. 1, 7, 8, and 9 and at 3:00 p.m. on Dec. 10.
The show, directed by Michael Aulick, is an adaptation of the popular short story written by Barbara Robinson, originally published in McCall’s Magazine.
The play is about the Herdman children, who were absolutely the worst kids in the history of the world. They lied and stole and smoked cigars (even the girls) and talked rough and hit little kids and talked back to their teachers. So, it surprised just about everybody when they decided to take part in the town’s Christmas pageant.
The Herdman kids had never heard of the Christmas story, but the way they interpreted it, you’d think the story of Jesus came right out of the FBI’s files. They thought the Wise Men were spies. It was an unforgettable Christmas pageant, an American classic.
This show has been cast twice, affording more actors a chance to perform. The first cast, called the Christmas cast, features Ingrid Young as Grace Bradley, Hayden Heiserman as Bob Bradley, Sarah Lemley as Beth Bradley and Alex Fabrizio as Charlie Bradley. The Herdman children are played by Anthony Hood, Mary Horzempa, Zach Zilokowski, Jayden Clutter, Sara Impellicceiri, and Ruari Stoll. The second cast, called the Pageant Cast features Alexandra Burdick as Grace Bradley, Alex Gordon as Bob Bradley, Eliza Aulick as Beth Bradley and Aiden Mills as Charlie Bradley. The Herdman children are played by BenJammin Moore, Callie Carroll, Daniel White, Allie Bryant, Autumn Carver, and Shia Conway.
The cast is rounded out by many other talented actors: Gory Dami, Baylei Mills, Amanda Tamplen, Amber Parsons, Maggie Storms, Josie Jarrett, Jessica Schultz, Colleen Hoselton, Lexy Glover, Audrey Orecchio, Carly Balog, Lliam Gerney, Chad Clutter, Andrew Mehler, Zach Larance, Brian Gonzalez, Jackson Clutter, Tristan Gonzalez, Taylor Miller, Lydia Mehl,
Raelin Stoll, Abbigail Bryant, Jacob Walker, Jennifer Kinder, Olivia Montgomery, and Maria Tracey.
Tickets are $10 if purchased online before the show at wlupageant.brownpapertickets.com. If purchased at the door, General Admission tickets are $12.50 for adults and $10 for Seniors/Faculty/Children. WLU Students (with current ID) are $5. Group discounts are available for parties of ten or more. For reservations call 304-366-8277
The production takes place in the Kelley Theatre in the Hall of Fine Arts on the campus of West Liberty University.