When Julianna Skluzacek and the original Merlin Players Theatre Troupe members began their vision 28 years ago little did they know how successful they would become.

In 2007 they were the first people to perform a play on the Paradise Center for the Arts stage in Faribault.  That play was, "A Christmas Carol."

This Friday, December 2, 2022 the final performances by the semi-professional group that has entertained nearly 50,000 of us in those 28 years will end their legacy with "A Christmas Carol."

This performance is being directed by Samuel Temple.  He has been involved with Merlin for approximately half his life.

Merlin Players Board President Steve Searl is Ebeneezer Scrooge, a role he has thoroughly enjoyed.

The late Dan Freeman was Scrooge in 2007. Temple explains this adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic is different from the 2007 version.

I asked Searl if he could put into words what it feels like to have something that has been such a part of your life end.  His answer is amazing.

Temple is appreciative of all involved in the production which will include a music score written locally and Technical Director Matt Boyd provides some amazing special effects for the ghosts that visit Scrooge and change him from grumpy to delightful.

Searl and Temple quickly pointed out Paradise Community Theater will still provide some great shows so it is not the end of live plays performed on the Paradise stage.

Performances for "A Christmas Carol" will be Friday, December 2, 2022 and Saturday, December 3, 2022 at 7:30 p.m.  Sunday, December 4, 2022 at 2:00 p.m.

Performances continue Thursday, December 8, 2022, Friday, December 9, 2022, Saturday, December 10, 2022 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, December 11, 2022 at 2:00 p.m.

Tickets are going very fast so it was highly recommended by Temple and Searl people go to the PCA website to purchase theirs if they want to see the final Merlin Players performance.

From an incredible performance of "Driving Miss Daisy" with the late Lois Vranesh and Father Henry Doyle in 1995 to this final production Merlin Players has stayed true to their Mission Statement.

The Merlin Players (TMP) is a semi-professional, non-union theater company that is located at the Paradise Center for the Arts in Faribault, Minnesota under the guidance of founding Artistic Director Julianna Skluzacek. It is a regional theater attracting audiences and talent from Owatonna, Faribault, Northfield, Waseca, the Twin Cities, Albert Lea and Rochester. Its first production was DRIVING MISS DAISY in December of 1995. Over the past 20 seasons, The Merlin Players has provided high quality entertainment to over 50,000 people in southern Minnesota. The Merlin Players logo is a small hawk called a Merlin. It is known for it's superior flying skills and it also is an exceptional hunter. Our spirit is working hard to rise once again and soar high with shows and a continued commitment to bringing you high quality entertainment for an affordable cost.

Come fly with us!

Fly off into the sunset in peace my friends for you have more than accomplished what you set out to do 28 years ago.

"A Christmas Carol" written by Charles Dickens in 1843 has a message that rings true today. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld
"A Christmas Carol" written by Charles Dickens in 1843 has a message that rings true today. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld

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