Thursday, September 10, 2015

A Christmas Carol at the Merchant's House Returns!

Summoners Ensemble Theatre

In association with the

Merchant’s House Museum

Presents the return engagement of

at the Merchant’s House

 Charles Dickens in New York, 1867

Adapted by John Kevin Jones & Rhonda Dodd
from Charles Dickens’ classic tale

Performed by John Kevin Jones
Directed by Rhonda Dodd

This is masterful storytelling
It’s much more theatrical than a simple reading, but it stays true to Dickens' voice.”, Zachary Stewart

“Standing in the parlor of the historic Merchant’s House Museum –
Jones summons Charles Dickens’ classic characters seamlessly.”
New York Daily News, Joe Dziemianowicz

“Jones skill as a performer and storyteller, combined with Dickens’ vivid descriptions
brings the events of ‘A Christmas Carol’ to perfect life”
EDGE New York, Brooke Pierce

“… we shall never have any entertainments more charming, or more full of genuine, legitimate and elevating pleasure …” – The New York Times, December 10, 1867

“The Christmas Carol becomes doubly enchanting when one hears it performed by Dickens.”
                                                            - New York Herald, December 10, 1867

In December 1867, Charles Dickens arrives in New York City for a month of sold-out performances of his beloved holiday classic, A Christmas Carol. Join Mr. Dickens, as portrayed by actor John Kevin Jones, as he tells his timeless Christmas tale in the elegant and intimate parlors of a 19th century family home, the Merchant’s House Museum (29 East 4th Street, Manhattan). 

Surrounded by festive 19th century holiday décor and period furnishings, A CHRISTMAS CAROL at the Merchant’s House takes audiences back 150 years in this magical one-hour performance created from Dickens’ own script. Performances run December 10 through Christmas Eve.

NEW this year! Toast the holiday season with actor John Kevin Jones in our cozy mid-19th century kitchen before the performance. Mulled wine and light fare will be served.

A CHRISTMAS CAROL at the Merchant’s House is presented by Summoners Ensemble Theatre and directed by Dr. Rhonda Dodd. Performances take place in the landmark 1832 Merchant’s House Museum, New York City’s only 19th century family home preserved intact, inside and out. Seating is strictly limited to 40.

Tickets are available at or by calling at (800) 838-3006

Regular performances: $40 - $60

Pre-show mulled wine, light fare and good cheer with John Kevin Jones $25

Group sales of 10 or more should email Summoners Ensemble Theatre at or call 646-844-5224.

Performance Schedule
Thursday, December 10 – Sunday, December 13
Tuesday, December 15 – Sunday, December 20
Tuesday, December 22 – Wednesday, December 24

7:00 pm curtain except December 23 and Christmas Eve performances at both 4:00 pm and 6:00 pm.

Mulled wine and light fare in the kitchen with actor John Kevin Jones begins at 6:00 pm each night – except December 23 and Christmas Eve, which will begin at 5:00 pm
This is strictly a limited engagement. 

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Haunted Holiday Returns!

Summoners Ensemble
in association with the
Merchant's House Museum

Presents the return engagement of

At the Merchant's House

John Kevin Jones in A Christmas Carol at the Merchant's House

20 Characters, 1 Actor, 1 Hour
Adapted by John Kevin Jones & Rhonda Dodd
from Charles Dickens' classic tale
Performed by John Kevin Jones
Directed by Rhonda Dodd

This is masterful storytelling
It's much more theatrical than a simple reading, but it still stays true to Dickens' voice.” – Zach Stewart

"A Christmas Carol stars John Kevin Jones in a stunning solo performance.”
Long Island Herald – Arlene Epstein

"John Kevin Jones offers a tour de force."
CrimCast – Demetra M. Pappas

“The experience is complete and perfectly suited to the season."
LaVoceDiNewYork – Laura Caparrotti

Some of Manhattan’s most famous resident ghosts will once again be visited by three well-known spirits this holiday season when Summoners Ensemble Theatre returns to the Merchant’s House Museum with A Christmas Carol at the Merchant’s House.

Decked with period decorations of the season, the elegant and intact Greek Revival double parlor of the landmark 1832 Merchant’s House Museum (29 East 4th Street, Manhattan) provides the perfect setting for this work of captivating storytelling.  Based on Dickens’ own performance text, crafted for the stage by Jones and Dodd, the show highlights the story’s stunning narrative imagery and wry humor.

Hailed as “Manhattan’s most haunted house,” by The New York Times, A Christmas Carol’s ghosts could call no better place home.


Tickets are available  by clicking on the Brown Paper Ticket icon above and to the right or by calling at 1 (800) 838-3006.

Regular performances: $37.50 - $57.50


Monday, December 22 - Tuesday, December 23
Special Christmas Eve, Wednesday, December 24 at 6:00 pm
Friday, December 26 – Sunday, December 28

All performances:   7:00 pm curtain except where noted 

Group sales of 8 or more should email Summoners Ensemble Theatre at

This is a strictly limited engagement and seating is limited.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Maxine Carol Martin Launches CD Fragments and Colors of Me With Benefit Concert November 1, 2013

"...definitely an album where she reveals herself and her great playing and vocals as well..."
Ken Laster of WHUS 91.7-Storrs, CT
Clarinetist and Tenor Saxophonist Maxine Carol Martin will launch her new CD, Fragments and Colors of Me, with a live concert, presented by Summoners Ensemble Theatre, November 1, 2013 at Smash Studios, (307 West 36th Street - 18th Floor) from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm.  Maxine brings her original, heartfelt music to the stage with guest, jazz guitarist Sinan Bakir.  Proceeds will benefit Summoners Ensemble Theatre.

Fragments and Colors of Me blends jazz, R&B, and Latin styles.  As well as performing on both clarinet and tenor saxophone, Maxine also provides the vocals on some of her inspiring, unique compositions. Along with guitarist Sinan Bakir, she's joined on stage by drummer Joe Palmer and bassist Matt Dwonszyk.

Tickets may be reserved by donation.
Suggested minimum donation:  $35.00 online - $40.00 at the door

Maxine Carol Martin is a Hartford, CT. resident.  Maxine lived and worked in New York for over 20 years where she performed at many venues including Bar 55, CBGB's, The Bitter End, The Nuyorican Poet's Cafe, Smalls, and St. Nicholas Pub. She has performed throughout Connecticut and with other musicians such as percussionist Abu Alvin Carter, Sr., banjoist and guitarist Jim Mercik, singers Margaux Hayes and Nicki Mathis, drummer Michael Augeri, and bassist Paul Fuller. Maxine has also performed in many International Women in Jazz events with bassists Carline Ray, Miriam Sullivan, and Kim Clarke; pianists Linda Presgrave and Patrizia Scascitelli; drummer Bernice Brooks, and other artists.
Having studied with saxophonists Charles Davis and Kenny Rogers at JazzMobile in New York and with a B.A. in music from The University of South Florida, Maxine was also a music education major at Hartt School of Music where she audited classes with saxophonists Jackie McLean and Paul Jeffries. She is currently a private music instructor in Hartford, CT.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

On tour with A Christmas Carol

Here are a few shots we wanted to share from A Christmas Carol's performances in the tri-state and mid-south!

Kevin  and Charles at the Frankel's party in Westchester enjoying a post-performance chat.

Joey and Kevin thanking Ruth for her hospitality. We're so glad she had us back for a second year.
Do we hear a third? 

Guests just after the performance in Hartford give a round of applause for A Christmas Carol!

At the Evergreen Theatre in Memphis, TN, Kevin  talks with Sandy after the first performance.

A Christmas Carol in The Studio Theatre at Theatre Row featured in The Wall Street Journal!

We are so pleased at the success we had presenting A Christmas Carol in the Studio Theatre at Theatre Row on 42nd Street. It was a great kick off to the holiday season!

Our poster in the lobby of Theatre Row!

Wrap a New Present In Fables of the Past
The Wall Street Journal - by PIA CATTON

Going deeper into the characters of "A Christmas Carol" is the mission on another Theatre Row stage, though John Kevin Jones's interpretation is a straight from the text, solo retelling of "A Christmas Carol," presented by Summoners Ensemble Theatre at the Studio Theatre from Wednesday to Saturday.

For Mr. Jones, Ebenezer Scrooge is more than a curmudgeon who changes his life out of a sense of guilt—it's more important that he's motivated by a new desire to do good. "I wanted to see him with his own humanity and experiences," he said. "It's about thinking, 'I haven't done anything to help anyone else and I haven't reached out.'"
His approach is pared down to a set comprising just a table and chair. The props are mimed, and Mr. Jones wears a simple costume that only approximates a period look. In many of the productions he's seen, he said, "there was something about the overblown production quality that took away from what Dickens was trying to say to us."

Keeping things simple also helps illustrate that "A Christmas Carol," though written 169 Christmases ago, offers enduring themes of struggle, generosity and forgiveness. "During the last Gilded Age there was such disparity between rich and poor," Mr. Jones said. "This businessman is all out for himself."

Scrooge can be a businessman, a comedian or a bodega owner, but the moral still works. And if it's a little different every year, all the better.
To read this article in its entirety, click the link below

Sharing success! Rhonda, Kevin, Joey and Sonya enjoying some post-performance glow!