Galion movie of A Christmas Carol

Galion students (left to right) Wyatt Estep, Abby Sparks, Brooklyn Gates, and Logan Estep rehearse their lines in preparation for the Galion High School Performing Arts department's virtual production of the Charles Dickens classic, "A Christmas Carol." The department made the stage production into a film that can be rented now through December 31, 2020, by visiting this link:

GALION -- What can you do when a pandemic has already wiped out your spring play, and puts next year's stage schedule on the critical list too?

If you're Galion High School teacher and show director Cheri Laughbaum you pivot to a solution that allows the students to participate in drama while adhering to social distancing requirements.

So, why not go on location, locally, and make a movie instead?

Hence, the Galion Performing Arts department took a different approach to their annual fall stage production by filming their rendition of the Charles Dickens classic, “A Christmas Carol.”

Laughbaum spent the summer pondering how to do an actual performance during the pandemic. She and her husband, Chris, brainstormed and came up with the idea for a film version of her favorite play.

“I absolutely love this play,” Laughbaum said. “Doing the film on location looked so much better, and we were able to socially distance ourselves easier on location versus on a set on the stage.”

It took Laughbaum and her husband, along with the cast, roughly 6 to 7 hours to record the video. GHS student Wilson Frankhouse edited the video.

“When I blocked out the show I didn't think about cars in the street or lighting issues, and we had to film out of order to work around two students being quarantined,” Laughbaum said. “The film definitely has a real feel thanks to recording at local locations like The Gill House, Brownella Cottage and HK Watkins store.”

The show was something different for the students, who had varied reactions to the non-traditional means of staging this production.

"I prefer the stage plays because I like the audience responses," GHS senior Britnie Smith said. “But, I also like the movie because we can see ourselves, which doesn't happen in an on-stage play production.”

“Making the movie was fun,” freshman Abby Sparks said. “It was definitely a new experience, and it was really cool performing in different areas.”

This production was important for Laughbaum because the students were very disappointed when the spring production was canceled because of the pandemic.

“Theatre is a need for us,” Laughbaum said. “I felt it was very important to let these students have a sense of normalcy in their lives and to do it safely.”

The GHS Performing Arts department’s film of “A Christmas Carol'' is available to rent online at and is available to anyone who would like to watch the performance now through Dec. 31, 2020. Each rental is for 48 hours at a time, and cost $15, plus admin fees per rental.

Galion City Schools

Please contact Cheri’ Laughbaum at for more information about the GHS Performing Arts department or with questions about renting the film.

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