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Alumna Returns to Direct NWU Theatre Tradition "A Christmas Carol"

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Tram Kieu will spend the fall semester in Thailand.
Leigh Walter (pictured center in red) once played Mrs. Fezziwig & now returns to direct the entire cast.
Walter ('13) has spent the past year working in New York City theaters.

Three years ago Leigh Walter was embracing everything about Mrs. Fezziwig, the jolly wife of Mr. Fezziwig in the Charles Dickens story, A Christmas Carol.

A sophomore theatre major at the time, Walter was just embarking on her stage experiences.

Walter is returning to the McDonald Theater stage. This time she’s not only familiarizing herself with Mrs. Fezziwig’s character, but all characters — especially Eboneezer Scrooge.

“We are looking to dig into the truth of the story of A Christmas Carol,” said Walters who is directing this year’s production. “I want to get to know Scrooge as a person instead of a caricature of a grumpy old man. I want to see myself in Scrooge when he refuses to give his hard earned money to the homeless, or when he gets tired of hearing Christmas carols. Once we believe in Scrooge as a real person, it will make his whole journey all the more magical.”

Walter performed, managed and designed 47 shows during her academic career. Her extensive experience along with her degree in theatre arts and directing gave her the skills and connections necessary to make her way into a demanding field.

Following her graduation in 2013, Walter moved to New York City to work as a production management intern for the New York Theatre Workshop. Through her internship she managed budgets, ensured technical aspects of each show worked properly, and learned more about production. The internship was followed by several directing and stage management positions in New York City theaters.

Now she’s temporarily back at Nebraska Wesleyan to direct her peers on the stage she once performed on.

“It’s like coming back to a family,” she said. “The opportunity came at the best time.”

A Christmas Carol runs December 4-7 and December 11-14 in McDonald Theatre, 51st Street and Huntington Ave. This marks the seventh year that Nebraska Wesleyan has performed the show.

Alex Flynt of Kirtland, Ohio, will play the role of Eboneezer Scrooge.