Special to the Chronicle
On Dec. 16, 17 and 18,DramaMama Studio will present a live theatrical performance of “A Christmas Goat” at Jefferson Town Gym in Jefferson, S.C.
“A Christmas Goat” follows the steps a small southern family in the early ’80s takes to get their widowed father, Howard, back to the family Christmas dinners. The children miss Howard, but are more than content celebrating Christmas without their father’s dearest friend, Goat. Betty, doing her best to keep family traditions intact, not only convinces everyone to get Howard back home for Christmas, but manages to position one of the town’s most eligible bachelorettes to the table. Vernon and Sudie, Howard’s son and daughter, protest at every step, but eventually agree to do their part in welcoming daddy back to the table even if it does mean he’ll bring Goat. Along the way, Howard informs everyone that he’d like to celebrate what he considers his last Christmas on Earth by eating his trusty sidekick, Goat. Goat is not pleased.
“A Christmas Goat” offers moments of comedy, dysfunction, family tenderness, Barbara Mandrell and the Mandrell Sisters, as well as a talking Goat.
“A Christmas Goat” is about family — dysfunctional, beautiful family. This particular family has Goat: a substitute, a scapegoat, the voice of reason and whatever other device necessary to get this family from point A to point B,” said Charity Rollins, “A Christmas Goat” director and cast member. “But I suspect that we don’t all come away from Goat with the same thing.”
Also in the cast is Jefferson town Councilmember Krystal Baldwin Jackson. Having served as stage manager for September’s production of “Henry,” this is Jackson’s first stint as a cast member and she is excited to be involved in making the arts available to the Jefferson and Pageland area. “Being a part of ‘A Christmas Goat’ means so much to me. It is truly special to welcome friends into your heart as family, even a Goat. Performing ‘A Christmas Goat’ in Jefferson makes this production even more near to my heart. Sharing it with my community and having their support makes this an exceptional experience.”
“A Christmas Goat” is the fifth play written by Pageland native Kevin Smith for DramaMama Studio. The studio previously staged Smith’s trilogy of children’s plays — the “Saving Wonderland” series — and the southern murder mystery, “Henry.”
“Yea, it’s about family and whatever,” Smith said, “but it’s got a talking goat. You can’t dismiss a talking goat. Goats make everything better, even Christmas.”
In addition to Charity Rollins as Darlene, returning DramaMama performers include Douglas Brown as Vernon and April Turner McManus as Betty, who tries desperately to hold on to the family Christmas despite the family’s problems with Goat. “My last big line of the play hits home because it is so true to my heart,” said April. “People do need family; they might not always be blood — and thank God they’re not — but people need people to care about and people need people to care about them.”
New to the stage are Chad Johnson as Howard, Krystal Baldwin Jackson as Sudie, and scene stealing Clay Jackson as Goat. The crew includes stage managers Melissa Marze and Christine Truglio, prop master Krystan Simpson Helms, with set construction by Gavin Jackson. “A Christmas Goat” is directed by Charity Rollins.
“A Christmas Goat” will be performed Friday, Dec. 16 at 7 p.m., with 2 p.m. matinee performances on Saturday, Dec. 17, and Sunday, Dec. 18, at the Jefferson Town Gym. Tickets are $5 per person.
“A Christmas Goat” is made possible by CMC Guns, Adam M. Foard Law, State Farm Insurance (Mike Cook), Cockrell Law Firm, Lynches River Electric Coop, Pageland Antique Mall, Christina Catoe Avon, Carolina Scrap Iron and Metal, Farm Bureau Insurance (Lynn Rollings), Hammonds Body and Discount Auto, Dr. George F. Pinsak, Pageland Progressive Journal, The Link, the town of Jefferson, as well as the entire Chesterfield County community.
For information and advance tickets, call 843-253-1767, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or purchase online at DramaMamaStudio.com/Goat.