PUBLISHED: 3:27 PM on Wednesday, November 30, 2005
'King Island Christmas' on stage this weekend
David Charles Goyette directs Alaskan holiday oratorio based on the children's book by Jean Rogers and Rie Muñoz

Perseverance Theatre presents the holiday oratorio "King Island Christmas," with libretto by Deborah Brevort and music by David Friedman, for six performances at the Juneau Douglas High School Auditorium from Dec. 1-4.

Directed by Perseverance Theatre Director of Education David Charles Goyette, with musical direction by David Paul, "King Island Christmas" features more than 100 Juneau performers on stage, including the Alaska Youth Choir and an adult community choir, both under the direction of Missouri Smyth, and the Juneau Student Symphony, under the direction of Rick Trostel.

In preparation for this production, Goyette and Scenic Designer Jennifer Morrell extensively researched King Island and the true story which inspired the children's book by Jean Rogers and Rie Muñoz on which the musical is based.

"I'm thrilled to have our community experience a new "King Island Christmas" and fall in love with the piece all over again," said PT Artistic Director PJ Paparelli.

PT will donate a portion of the proceeds from this production of "King Island Christmas" to the King Island Native Community, to support the efforts of King Islanders, who now live year-round in Nome, to maintain dwellings on King Island and return to them during the spring and summer months.

"By making this donation, we show both our respect for the King Islanders and our acknowledgement of whose story it is that we are retelling," said PT Producing Director Jeffrey Herrmann.

"King Island Christmas" tells the story of an isolated Alaskan community that awaits the arrival of the North Star, a freighter carrying their priest, Father Carroll, as well as the supplies that will see them through the winter.

When a violent storm prevents the villagers from rowing their 'Oomiak' (a walrus skin boat) out to meet the ship, they band together and carry their boat over a mountain to calmer waters in the lee of the island.

For tickets or more information, call Perseverance Theatre at (907) 463-TIXS.