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By Cari Hachmann
Staff Writer 

'The Ark' brings a modern twist to an old tale


Last updated 4/22/2019 at 12:38pm

From left, Mary Fry as Eliza, Cianna Garrison as Sariah, Christian Blackburn as Shem, Hayley Bendixon as Martha, Erika Torrescano as Egyptus and Jack Fry as Japeth rehearse songs for Christ the King Lutheran Church's musical production of "The Ark" to take the stage April 26-27 in Fallbrook.

Christ the King Lutheran Church's musical production "The Ark" is a fresh take on a familiar tale that will hit the stage in Fallbrook at 7:30 p.m. April 26-27 and through May 3-4.

There will also be daytime showings at 2 p.m., April 27 and May 4.

"It is a light-hearted musical about how Noah and his family get along being stuck together for a long time on the ark with a bunch of animals," Mary Fry said, who is the play's director and doubles in the show as Eliza, Noah's wife.

The new musical is for audiences of all ages. The church is at 1620 S. Stage Coach Lane. Audience members see through the eyes of the animals, as the theater is transformed into Noah's ark.

The musical production is written and composed by Michael McClean, renowned for more than 20 best-selling albums. For "The Ark," McClean presents an uplifting score, ranging from pop music to gospel, with songs that will have viewers dancing or singing along in their seats.

Accompaniment tracks featuring sheet music and animal noises are produced by church member Conrad Linberg.

With special permission from Miracle or 2 Publishing, the production is put on by the King's Players, the church's theater ministry group. The Ark's eight-member cast ranges in age from 18 to 75 years old.

God instructs Noah to build a vessel that will hold the people of Earth and all of its animals during a rainstorm that will ensue for 40 days and 40 nights. After the ark is built, Noah must collect a male and female of every animal on Earth. After the flood, the animals are to be able to leave the ship in order to recreate the world.

Fry said the musical humorously portrays the family's struggles on the ship while they must wait out the flood for more than a year. Noah and Eliza have three sons, Japeth, Ham and Shem, who each bring their wives, Sariah, Egyptus and Martha, aboard the ark.

For instance, Martha and Shem are newlyweds, and Martha is attempting to win Shem's heart through his stomach, although she isn't the greatest cook. Aware of her culinary shortcomings, Shem continues to sneak and eat his mother's food, while trying to hide his hunger from Martha.

In other comedic aspects, brothers Ham and Egyptus don't believe it's really going to rain, so while the rest of the family comes prepared for the rainstorm, they show up in Hawaiin shirts and flip flops.

"It's been a lot of fun," Jim Haines, who plays the character of Noah, said.

Mary Fry and Jim Haines practice their marital roles of Eliza and Noah for the "The Ark" musical production.

While the cast has been amused by the script, Haines said the play still offers a universal message: "God is always there to support you even though you might not realize it at the time. He won't give us any challenge that he won't give us the strength to overcome."

Erika Torrescano, who plays Ham's wife Egyptus, said she started acting in plays when she was 8 years old. The 19-year-old said she is looking forward to opening night of "The Ark."

"I hope people enjoy the comedic side of it," Torrescano said. "It still has the same storyline, but I like that it has fun little twists that make it more contemporary. And I hope people enjoy that side of it as well."

Purchase "The Ark" tickets for $10 available now at Major Market in Fallbrook, or visit, or call (760) 728-3256.


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