Renaissance Center explodes with Christmas activities on Dec. 10

Release Date: 11/17/2005. Expired: 12/10/2005

Christmas explodes with a full day of activities at The Renaissance Center in Dickson on Saturday, Dec. 10.

The schedule includes three different live theatre productions, holiday-themed laser shows, Christmas art workshops for children and adults, a Christmas dulcimer workshop, two art exhibits and receptions, a pottery and art sale, and the center’s traditional holiday centerpiece: a 25-foot decorated tree in the rotunda.

And if all that holiday spending has created a financial crunch, Renaissance Technology Solutions is offering a workshop on Managing an Electronic Budget that same day.

“There will be Christmas activities from one end of the building to the other from the time the doors open until we close,” said Bob Kucher, senior director of Visual Arts, Theatre and Dance at The Renaissance Center. “In just one day you have the option of three different holiday plays, three different holiday-themed CyberSphere shows, two different art exhibits with corresponding receptions while also getting a chance to shop for unique Christmas gifts in our annual pottery and art sale.”

The Music Department is offering a Dulcimer Christmas Workshop with former national champion Larry Conger. The Theatre Arts Department presents productions of A Christmas Carol Revisited, Nuncrackers: The Nunsense Christmas Musical and Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus. The Visual Arts Department is hosting its annual 6th annual Children’s Christmas Workshop, a Christmas Ornament Workshop and the 4th annual Pottery and Art Sale. The Visual Arts Gallery opens the 7th annual Little Masters Art Exhibit with a reception and closes the annual Student Art Exhibit in the North Wing with a reception. The CyberSphere Digital Theater presents a planetarium show that traces the origins of many holiday traditions as well as two laser shows of Christmas music accompanied by spectacular special effects.

“If this doesn’t get you in the Christmas spirit, then nothing will,” said Pacer Harp, managing director of the Gaslight Dinner Theatre, which is presenting Nuncrackers. “We’ll have productions from three of the center’s theatre groups: the dinner theatre, the Renaissance Players and our Mind Enriching Theatre series with an original adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol.”

“Dulcimers have become a very popular instrument with people of all ages,” said Elaine Sherrill, senior director of the Music Department. “Larry is a former national champion and well known builder and instructor of the dulcimer and his workshop will focus on learning holiday songs on the dulcimer. Participants can also join Larry for a Christmas jam session in the rotunda after the workshop.”

“Many people have begun maintaining their household budgets on their home computers and our workshop will teach the basics of tracking your finances on the computer as well as various software options available,” said Brad Beaubien, senior director of Information Technology. “Sticking to a budget is never more critical than at Christmas when we all face the task of stretching our resources to meet the demands of the season. Keeping a budget on your home computer can be a great tool.”

The Renaissance Center’s schedule of activities for Dec. 10 includes:

4th annual Pottery and Art Sale

9 a.m.-9 p.m. in the rotunda

There will be a large variety of clay projects, stained glass pieces, paintings and photography by students and faculty at the center on sale in the rotunda throughout the day. Functional and decorative pieces alike will provide that unique gift for a special someone on your list. The pottery and art sale also will be open 3-9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9. For information, call Kathy Carter at (615) 740-5625.

Managing an Electronic Budget

9 a.m.-3 p.m., $25 (advance registration required)

This class will teach students how to create and manage a budget using a customized spreadsheet that can automatically update expenses. Students will also learn how to safely use online banking and bill payment. For information, call Brad Beaubien at (615) 740-5544.

A Christmas Carol Revisited

lunch at 12 p.m., show at 1 p.m. in the Performance Hall, $10 lunch and show, $7 show only.

Dickson playwright Tina Smith Romine has created a new version of Charles Dickens’ classic A Christmas Carol in which the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future have lost the spirit of the season and it’s up to Emily Scrooge and Jessica Marley, descendants of Ebenezer Scrooge and Jacob Marley, to get it back. Each ghostly visit is themed to a different entertainment era, including 1950s television, gangster film noir and a Star Wars spoof complete with light saber battle. Directed by Zak Risinger, the show is presented by the center’s Mind Enriching Theatre (MET) series. For more information, call Hal Partlow at (615) 740-5534.

6th annual Children's Christmas Workshop, sponsored by Wal-Mart

1-4 p.m., $10 (limited to 75 children, advance registration required)

Children will work like little elves in three hands-on activities with the Visual Arts Department creating gifts and decorations. Hot chocolate, cookies and a visit with Santa make for an afternoon full of fun. For more information, call Bob Kucher at (615) 740-5565.

Christmas Ornament Workshop with David and Susan Allsbrooks

1-4 p.m., $40 (limited to 10 students, advance registration required)

David and Susan Allsbrooks will present a workshop that adults and children 15 and older can take together. Clear beveled and textured glass will be used to make hanging ornaments. For more information, contact Bob Kucher at (615) 740-5565.

A Dulcimer Christmas Workshop

1:30-3 p.m., $40 (advance registration required)

The workshop will teach songs of the season in D-A-d tuning that are perfect for the advancing beginner or intermediate player. After the workshop, join instructor Larry Conger for a Christmas jam session around the Christmas tree in the rotunda. For more information, call Elaine Sherrill at (615) 740-5545.

Season of Light

2 p.m. and 7 p.m. in the CyberSphere, $5 adults, $3 seniors and children

This planetarium show in the CyberSphere Digital Theatre traces the origins of many of our holiday traditions. Season of Light is presented Saturdays, Dec. 3-17. For more information, call (615) 740-5600.

Laser Holidays

3 p.m. and 8 p.m. in the CyberSphere, $6

Enjoy many of your favorite Christmas songs accompanied by spectacular laser effects. Laser Holidays is presented Saturdays, Dec. 3-17. For more information, call (615) 740-5600.

7th annual Little Masters Art Exhibit, sponsored by The Bank of Dickson

opening reception 4-6 p.m. in the Visual Arts Gallery, free

Enjoy a holiday art exhibit in which Dickson County students create themed holiday trees decorated to represent different art periods. The exhibit is open 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Saturday, Dec. 9-Jan. 21. For more information, call Curtis Southerland at (615) 740-5519.

Renaissance Center Student Art Exhibit

closing reception 4-6 p.m. in the North Wing Gallery, free

A variety of art created by students at The Renaissance Center will be on display 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Saturday, Nov. 10-Dec. 10. The exhibit will include various mediums including paintings, pottery, photography and more. For more information, call Hannah Maxwell at (615) 740-5615.

Nuncrackers: The Nunsense Christmas Musical, sponsored by The Bank of Dickson

6:30 p.m. in the Gaslight Dinner Theatre, $27 (reservations required)

The nuns of the Mount Saint Helen Convent return with a hilarious production for the convent’s new cable access television program. The fourth in Dan Goggin’s popular Nunsense series, Nuncrackers is a night of laughs and holiday cheer with a wonderful buffet dinner. The show is presented Thursdays-Saturdays, Dec. 1-17. For more information, call Pacer Harp at (615) 740-5550.

Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus

7 p.m. in the Performance Hall, $12 adults, $10 seniors, $7 children under 13

The Renaissance Players present a warm and touching production telling the story behind the famous New York Sun editorial about the existence of Santa Claus, prompted by 8-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon’s letter. Directed by Hal Partlow, the community theatre production inspires the audience with the Christmas spirit embodied in the words of Frank Church, who penned the editorial. The show is presented at 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays, Dec. 2-18. For more information, call Amy Scott at (615) 740-5551.

Christmas Laser Fantasy

9 p.m. in the CyberSphere, $6

The music of Mannheim Steamroller is presented along with laser and video effects in a moving holiday program in the CyberSphere Digital Theater. Christmas Laser Fantasy is presented Saturdays, Dec. 3-17. For more information, call (615) 740-5600.

For more information on events at The Renaissance Center, call (615) 740-5600 or visit the center’s Web site at The Renaissance Center is a fine arts and technology education and performing arts center at 855 Highway 46 South in Dickson, just 35 miles west of Nashville on Interstate 40 at exit 172.