Hickory – Rick Seay, the director for last season’s acclaimed comedy, Lend Me a Tenor, has returned to Hickory Community Theatre as the guest director for the Christmas musical Beautiful Star, an Appalachian Nativity. The homegrown, North Carolina bluegrass show starts Friday November 30th at the Hickory Community Theatre.

Seay has been in Hickory since 2014 when he arrived to take the position as Head of School at Hickory Day School. Although primarily an educator by profession, he is an accomplished theatrical director and actor with dozens of shows to his credit. His work includes Shakespearean classics (Julius Caesar, The Winter’s Tale), modern dramas (Agnes of God, The Elephant Man), and musicals (Mame, The Sound of Music.) He has also directed several foreign plays (Medea, Cyrano de Bergerac) for which he also did the script translation.“I’m very excited to be back at HCT after last year’s Lend Me a Tenor.

Beautiful Star is a different type of show in just about every way — content, style, setting, a musical, and a North Carolina original!  I’ve always been a huge fan of bluegrass music.  My grandfather and great-uncles all played bluegrass together, and one of my prized possessions is my grandfather’s fiddle — complete with a mountaineer’s solution to making it more resonant: rattlesnake rattles in the body! Living up to its name, Beautiful Star is a truly beautiful show.  The re-telling of Biblical stories in an Appalachian idiom makes it quite charming, and the bluegrass score is catchy and appealing.  We have a great cast ranging from the very young to the not so young so the multi-generational appeal is strong.  We’re all having a terrific time getting the show ready and can’t wait for an audience.”

Performances of Beautiful Star, an Appalachian Nativity are on Fridays and Saturdays (Nov 30 and Dec 1, 7, 8, 14 & 15) at 8:00pm, Thursdays (Dec 6 & 13) at 7:30pm and Sundays (Dec 9 & 16) at 2:30pm.Tickets for Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $10 for students and youth 18 & under. Thursday night tickets for adults and seniors are $16, students and children are $10.

Tickets are on sale online at www.hickorytheatre.org or through the Theatre box office, in person or by phone at 828-328-2283. Box office hours are 12-5 Wednesday through Friday.  HCT is a Funded Affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County.

The Theatre’s 2018-2019 Season is sponsored by Paramount Automotive and A Cleaner World. Beautiful Star, an Appalachian Nativity is produced by Sunbelt Xpress and The Guild at Hickory Community Theatre.

PHOTO: Rick Seay returns to Hickory Community Theatre as the guest director of Beautiful Star, an Appalachian Nativity, on stage at the Hickory Community Theatre November 30th through December 16th. Photo courtesy of Rick Seay.