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'Forgotten Carols' brings Broadway-style Christmas musical to Asbury Methodist in Madison (video)

In the video, above, excerpts from the Broadway-style Christmas musical, 'The Forgotten Carols,' show the show's range of humor, inspiration, pathos and hope. ()

Michael Young, as 'Uncle John' in 'The Forgotten Carols,' tells stories that Nurse Constance, seated, finds hard to believe. The inspirational Broadway-style Christmas musical by Michael McLean and starring Michael Young, with back-up music by the choirs of Asbury United Methodist Church, will be performed at the church in Madison, Ala., on Dec. 5, 2013. (TheosTheatricals.com)

MADISON, Alabama A Christmas message, Broadway-style, is coming to , 980 Hughes Road in Madison, with The Forgotten Carols, on Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013.

Starring Michael Young as Uncle John, a mysterious old man who claims to have known some amazing people, by singer-songwriter Michael McLean retells the story of Christmas from the viewpoint of some of some people who, at first, thought they had missed the miracle altogether. Uncle John tells his stories to Constance, a competent nurse who is, at first, completely convinced that Uncle John is insane. But Constance is also a person who, like many of the people Uncle John tells her about, thinks that the miracle of Christmas if there is one is not for her.

Terry Jackson, at left, the director of traditional music and arts at Asbury United Methodist Church, 980 Hughes Road in Madison, Ala., discusses the logistics of mounting 'The Forgotten Carols,' starring Michael Young, at right, in the church's Grace Building's contemporary worship room on Dec. 5, 2013. (Kay Campbell / KCampbell@AL.com)

The nurse is not a bad person; she is just shut down because of all the stuff in her life, Young said Monday as he and Terry Jackson, the director of traditional music and arts at Asbury United Methodist Church, 980 Hughes Road in Madison, planned logistics for the show s production in Asbury s Grace Building.

In this show, you get to watch her transformation she comes to the place that she realizes that God has given us all we need.

, the Emmy Award-winning TV host, actor and producer, has stage and screen credits that include hosting ABC s Kids Are People, Too! and also guest star appearances on TV series Love Boat, Remington Steele, and Love American Style. The son of a career U.S. Air Force officer, Young has also starred in seven USO holiday tours.

His Christian faith and values have always informed the kinds of projects he became involved with and the kinds of friends he made during his years in Hollywood, Young said. But it was attending McLean s sold-out performance in Las Vegas with a previously non-Christian friend a few years ago and seeing how the story moved his friend to laughter and tears -- and prompted that man s journey to becoming a Christian -- that convinced Young he should accept McLean s offer to tour the show in the Southeast United States.

This is the third season for Young s production of The Forgotten Carols, and its first performance in the Tennessee Valley. Young, who now lives in the Atlanta area, is married to a relative of Dr. Alan Weathersby, the senior pastor of Asbury.

One performance

'Michael McLean's The Forgotten Carols: Bible Study' by Greg Smith, a pastor and counselor, gives small groups and Sunday School classes a nine-week study of the Bible verses behind the inspiring stories of 'The Forgotten Carols.'

The musical will be performed once on Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013, at 7 p.m. The 50 voices of Asbury s combined adult and youth choirs along with singers from the contemporary service, have been rehearsing the group numbers that will punctuate and highlight the professionals performance.

People are enjoying singing it, Jackson said. Dorene Gullatt is directing our choir, so I m getting the opportunity to sing, too.

The choir will have one run-through with the actors the day of the performance. That sort of professional pace has worked pretty well, Young said.

A couple of times, choir would be a little late getting into the first song, but by the second song, they ve all been all right, Young said. And in the part where they sing some of Handel s Messiah, usually they blow us off the stage!

The show itself has a sweet back-story. McLean, like many young musicians, was going through some lean times in the early 1980s. One Christmas, with no money to buy a gift for his wife, he penned the songs and story, The Forgotten Carols. Young, a friend of his, bought the resulting book and CD of the music to give as gifts. Young now plans to spend 2014 getting the screen play and funding together to make a feature film from the story.

This is a ministry I think it was Meryl Streep who said that theater stirs the molecules, Jackson said. Good theater, well done, can deliver the gospel.

Tickets are for students and seniors, and for adults, with group discounts. Tickets can be reserved at .



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