‘Rudolph’ to light up Marathon Center

FINDLAY —Everyone who celebrates Christmas is likely familiar with the story of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

But you might not know about Rudolph: the Musical, a performance that is set to hit the University of Findlay’s Marathon Center for the Performing Arts at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 29.

“On the surface, this is a story about a reindeer named Rudolph, who is born with a glowing red nose,” said Talia Gloster, who plays Rudolph, in an email. “He grows up around people who don’t understand, and in fact fear his “non-conformity,” but, as he grows, he meets wonderful individuals (like Hermey the Elf/Dentist, the ever-hopeful and kind Clarice, and the determined, vibrant Yukon Cornelius) who do not question the ways in which Rudolph is different from them. They help Rudolph understand that his glowing nose was never something to be ashamed of and, with his nose, Rudolph winds up saving the whole holiday of Christmas! On a deeper level, I think this show puts into really simple perspective that there really is no rhyme or reason to the ‘logic’ of prejudice, that we must remain hopeful to find people and communities that will celebrate us for who we are, and that, regardless of the varieties among us, we are all deserving of love and validation.”

Gloster said that the audience can expect the same elements of the original Rudolph movie that they are familiar with, but live and on stage.

“They should be excited to see the story that they know and love, live and in person!” she said. “That means, indeed, there will be a huge abominable snow monster, there will be flying reindeer, there will be snow! The creativity of the team that brought this classic movie to life ensures that audiences will hear and see all of the iconic elements of the movie that they’ve watched for so many years, but that they also experience the extra pizzazz and energy that live theater brings to storytelling.”

And the show has been just as exciting for her as a performer so far.

“As I’m writing this, we’re on the bus en route to our next location after finishing our official opening in Tyler, TX,” said Gloster. “So far, it’s been so wonderful. The opportunity to bring this story, which ultimately promotes joy and togetherness at its core, all over the country is a blessing. Everyone in the cast and crew are all so clearly committed to both enjoying each other’s company and enjoying the magic of this show while we’re on the road; being around the positive, constructive energy of artists who simply want to make our audiences’ days better fills me with all sorts of soft, fulfilling feelings.”

Gloster also said that she has specifically enjoyed performing as Rudolph, who she calls a “fresh soul in the world” who has no reason not to trust everyone.

“Kids are inherently born with the kind of unadulterated curiosity and openness that Rudolph has, so I hope that, for kids watching, the moral of this story just reinforces that lack of judgment they organically possess,” she said. “And, for the adults (whom I feel this show is for just as much as it is for kids), I hope this show floods them with a whole lot of warm and fuzzy nostalgia — I also hope that it serves as a potent reminder that the ways in which we pass judgements, deeming some “better” than others, are all learned and can be unlearned. If we choose to do the work to release these judgements of ourselves and others, we can open ourselves up to endless possibilities of joy and love.”

Tickets for “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical” are on sale now at the Marathon Center website, mcpa.org.

Reach Jacob Espinosa at 567-242-0399.