By Darla Shelden, City Sentinel Reporter –
This story first appeared online on Nov. 13, 2020.
OKLAHOMA CITY– For the ninth consecutive year, the Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma will raise money for the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma during their run of “A Christmas Carol.” The event is presented by Devon Energy.
Lyric Theatre is celebrating its diamond anniversary of the performance which is now running through December 27.
As a COVID-19 pandemic precaution, this year’s performance is being held outdoors at the historic Harn Homestead, 1721 N. Lincoln Boulevard.
The venue has been reimagined into a Victoria era holiday village with patrons following Charles Dicken’s tale of transformation and redemption as they walk from scene to scene during the 75-minute production.
The production features two rotating casts. The complete schedule of performance dates and actors is available on the Lyric website.
Lyric representatives will review weather conditions daily, and any delays or cancellations will be announced on the Lyric website and the official Lyric Theatre Facebook page..
Donations will be collected following each performance through Dec. 27 to benefit the Regional Food Bank.
Founded in 1980, the Regional Food Bank is the state’s largest hunger-relief 501(c)(3) nonprofit that distributes food through a network of community-based partner agencies and schools.
Since 2011, Lyric Theatre patrons have donated a total of more than $178,000.
“We are overjoyed that Lyric Theatre has created an innovative, and safe, way to continue this metro holiday tradition,” said Stacy Dykstra, chief executive officer of the Regional Food Bank.
“Since 2011, Lyric Theatre, and their loyal patrons, have helped to provide more than a million meals to Oklahomans living with food insecurity.”
Lyric is a nonprofit member theatre of the National Alliance for Musical Theatre and Allied Arts.
“Oklahoma is the fifth hungriest state in the nation,” said Cathy Nestlen, Director of Communications for the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma told reporter Angelica Brown of KOKH FOX 25 News. “That was before the pandemic hit, so, unfortunately, Oklahoma is a hungry state.”
In the past year, the Regional Food Bank distributed 56.5 million pounds of food through its network of partners in central and western Oklahoma. Partner agencies have reported a 30 percent increase in need among Oklahomans facing food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“There are too many Oklahoma families who live paycheck to paycheck, there’s a tipping point in every household,” said Nestlen. “Food continually falls down the priority list.”
In order to offer a safe experience, Lyric Theatre will be enforcing the following guidelines:
- All patrons, staff and volunteers are required to wear masks, which must remain on their faces at all times.
- All audience members will have their temperature checked with a no-touch thermometer before entering the performance space. If a patron has a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher, they will not be admitted. Tickets will be exchanged for a future performance, or a full refund will be issued.
- Lyric will provide hand sanitizing stations throughout the space for patron usage.
- Plexiglass safety partitions will be in place between the public and box office and concessions staff.
Tickets for “A Christmas Carol” are available at LyricTheatreOKC.org or by calling Lyric’s box office at 405-524-9312.
Founded in 1963, Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma is the state’s leading professional theatre company. Lyric produces classic and contemporary musicals, new works, and plays featuring artists from Oklahoma and around the nation.
For more information, visit LyricTheatreOKC.org. To learn more about the Regional Food Bank, visit regionalfoodbank.org