A Christmas miracle with a nostalgic twist

Crystal Ballroom plays host to Blue Bridge Theatre performance

The Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre is bringing back the nostalgic days of radio with Miracle on 34th Street – the radio play! at the Fairmont Empress Hotel.

The show features 14 performers dressed in 1940s haute couture provided by designer Patricia Reilly.

“2011 has been a landmark year for Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre and Miracle on 34th Street is our way of saying thank you Victoria while contributing to the tremendous holiday spirit that lights up our city during the holiday season,” said Blue Bridge producing artistic director Brian Richmond.

The presentation style of Miracle on 34th Street will be familiar to those who attended last year’s holiday show It’s a Wonderful Life! staged as though it were a live broadcast from the golden age of radio.

This year’s production has moved to the Crystal Ballroom in the historic Empress Hotel for five performances between Dec. 14 and 18.

With scripts in hand, Blue Bridge favourites Thea Gill, John Krich, James Leard, Amanda Lisman, Christopher Mackie, Brian Richmond, Jacob Richmond, Wes Tritter, Kelly Hudson and newcomer Chelsea Seaby lend their voices to the classic tale of faith and imagination.

Fringe favourite and Atomic Vaudeville mainstay Andrew Bailey adapted the script from the Valentine Davies original and also takes to the stage as Fred Gailey, the lawyer who is determined to prove that Santa Claus is real. Also returning this year is Toronto-based award-winning composer and musician John Gzowski, who will provide the 1940s-style Foley sound effects live on stage that make the experience feel authentic.

“We’re very excited that John has once again decided to lend his tremendous talent to this exciting new holiday offering,” said Richmond. “We’re also thrilled to be bringing our performances to the beautiful Empress Hotel amidst the wonderful Festival of Trees.”

Performances will take place Dec. 14 at 8 p.m., Dec. 15 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Dec. 18 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $35 for adults, $30 for students and seniors and $15 for children under 12 and are available through the Blue Bridge office at 920 Johnson Street or by calling 250-385-4462 or at the door on the day of performance. Seating is limited.