DCCA News: An enlightening experience


Lightwire Theater’s A Very Electric Christmas has been described as a “neon Nutcracker,” forming an inviting and enticing image for the production that will literally light up the stage at Henry St. Clair Memorial Hall on Sunday, November 19. However, the Darke County Center for the Arts Family Theatre Series presentation includes a diversity of additional elements that will brighten the season for little kids and adults alike regardless of any similarity to the ubiquitously performed holiday ballet.

A fantastically executed show featuring neon characters who perform in the dark wearing puppet-like costumes outfitted with glowing electroluminscent wire, A Very Electric Christmas brilliantly brings a charming tale to life for audiences of all ages. Some parents and perhaps a few youngsters will be more fascinated with the technology than with the delightful story, adding another dimension to an enlightening experience for all concerned. Electroluminescent wire, powered by AA batteries, emits 360 degrees of glowing light to the durable and pliable sculptures worn by the artists who become Nutcrackers, toy soldiers, mischievous mice, birds and more as they tell the tale of a baby bird named Max who desperately wants to make it home for Christmas after getting blown off course during his families’ flight southward for the winter.

Images from Nutcracker abound, including a raucous dance by villainous rats celebrating their crimes and a version of the ballet’s energetic “Russian Dance” performed by dancing worms. Joyful holiday pleasures including lit candy canes and red bows are depicted in this gentle yet dramatic presentation, all accompanied by holiday tunes and other music ranging from the songs of Mariah Carey to Louis Armstrong to Wagner’s “Flight of the Valkyries” and beyond.

Lightwire Theater founders Ian Carney and Corbin Popp, who met while dancing in Twyla Tharp’s Movin’ Out on Broadway, share a mutual love of theater and technology; their discovery of electroluminscent wire turned them on to exploring the endless possibilities of the product. Along with their wives Eleanor and Whitney, the inspired entrepreneurial duo began to create innovative theatrical experiences at their home base in New Orleans which they have since delivered to audiences around the world. Their shows are designed with kids in mind, but contain subtle components intended to delight adults as well

Local audiences have enthusiastically responded to the vividly luminous worlds created by Lightwire Theatre in past productions presented at St. Clair Memorial Hall, and will eagerly look forward to once again following the illuminated adventures of appealing and colorful creatures cavorting across the stage. Join the crowd, delighting in the dazzling visuals, poignant storytelling, and evocative music that have become a hallmark of this internationally recognized theatre company.

Tickets are just $5; to reserve yours, contact DCCA at 937-547-0908 or [email protected]. Tickets are available online at www.CenterForArts.net or may be purchased at DCCA’s office, as well as at Greenville Public Library, Readmore’s Hallmark, and Darke County Visitors Center in Greenville, and the Worch Memorial Library in Versailles. Tickets will also be available at the door prior to the performance; the show begins at 2 p.m.


By Marilyn Delk


Marilyn Delk is a director of the Darke County Center for the Arts and can be reached at [email protected]. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.

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