For the past four years, the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company (CSC) has generously donated to the Casey Cares Foundation through live requests during holiday performances, but this year is different. During heightened restrictions for COIVD-19, many theater companies have had to do things differently so, the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company will be doing a virtual “Be Merry. Make Holiday!” performance featuring a recorded program of holiday stories, songs and readings as an online watchable event on Friday, December 18, 202 at 8 pm on CSC’s Facebook and YouTube Channel. As part of the recorded program, there will be a special message from Casey Baynes, executive director for Casey Cares Foundation, encouraging viewers to donate to the nonprofit during the holidays.
“We want to thank the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company for their partnership over the past four years, and to say how much we will miss their in-person annual production of A Christmas Carol. In the past, the audiences have given generously to support our mission but we know this year needs to be different. We’re thankful for this amazing opportunity to enjoy beautiful holiday pieces filmed in your gorgeous theatre while also being able to mention our charity and the need for funds," said Casey Baynes, executive director for Casey Cares Foundation.
The program will feature CSC mainstays, as well as members of the Baltimore community, in a host of performances, including songs from past productions of A Christmas Carol productions (which will be strictly limited in the live presentation on Dec. 21); readings of poems and stories like Longfellow's “Christmas Bells,” Rosetti's "In the Bleak Midwinter," "Winter" by Shakespeare, “Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus,” and "A Visit from St. Nicholas" by Clement Clarke Moore; and a special arrangement of “Silent Night,” performed by members of the CSC Veterans Ensemble, Olive Branch & Laurel Crown. The small choir is festively outfitted in A Christmas Carol caroler costumes.
According to Laura Boydston, CSC Board of Trustees Chair, "This is a gift to the community. Because we cannot gather in our beautiful theatre to revel in our annual production of spirits and redemption with our Baltimore twist, we wanted something to share to let the region know we're missing our audience."