All right, so Ira David Wood will star in the annual musical comedy production of A Christmas Carol this year ... it'll just be a different Ira David Wood. Specifically, "Ira" David Wood IV, son of the show's traditional performer, Ira "David" Wood III, will take over as Scrooge. Wood III, who's been doing the show for 35 years, has a good excuse: open-heart surgery. Reports say he's in recovery, and we wish this mainstay of local theater and his family the best. But it will be intriguing to see how the show changes with the younger Wood in charge, both on stage and co-directing with his sister Evan Rachel Wood (most recently seen on True Blood, and who, contrary to long-held plans, is not playing Mary Jane in the now-opening U2-Julie Taymor Broadway musical collaboration, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark).
What new topical references will slip into the show this year, and what will it be like for the elder Wood to be in the audience for once? Find out Dec. 3–5 at DPAC, or from Dec. 8–15 at Raleigh's Memorial Auditorium. Tickets start at $25. Visit dpacnc.com or theatreinthepark.com.
For another musical take on the Dickens classic, try the one at Sanford's Temple Theatre, which features songs by Michael Hoagland and runs Dec. 2–19. We like our musical Dickens in North Carolina. Visit templeshows.com. —Zack Smith