gypsy 1Not every town has its own community theater that stages live productions but youโ€™re lucky if yours does or if you’re near one. Such is the case in my hometown of Santa Clarita Valley, where the Canyon Theatre Guild thrives even in the shadows of giant, glitzy concert halls in Los Angeles, about 30 โ€“ 40 minutes south of this suburban neighborhood.ย 

Itโ€™s where my family and I recently saw a wonderful rendition of โ€œA Christmas Carolโ€ over the holidays. The production followed the classic story but enhanced it with creative song and dance choreography. Thatโ€™s what makes the Canyon Theatre Guild so enjoyable โ€“ it features popular Broadway shows with a local twist. And itโ€™s fun to recognize people we know who are part of the cast. Plus, you canโ€™t beat the price for most shows: $17 for adults, and $15 for kids and seniors.

CTGexterior7The non-profit arts organization produces 10 full-scale shows each year that attract people from throughout the L.A. area. Abbey Road, a Beatles tribute band that got great reviews from theย Los Angeles Timesย and other major publications when it performed last year at the Canyon Theatre Guild, is back on Jan. 13, 2012. Tickets for this special engagement: $25 – $40.

Next up: โ€œGypsy,โ€ the classic musical journey about the ultimate stage mother and her daughters. This enjoyable show will feature the popular songs โ€œEverythingโ€™s Cominโ€™ Up Rosesโ€ and โ€œLet Me Entertain You.โ€ Show dates: Jan. 27 โ€“ Feb. 26, 2012.

Running currently is โ€œA Little Princess,โ€ which follows the delightful adventures of Sara Crewe in Miss Minchinโ€™s School, from Jan. 28 โ€“ Feb. 26, 2012.

The Canyon Theatre Guild, a popular entertainment venue since 1970, also runs workshops for children and teens. And auditions are open to anyone with a penchant for performing. For more information, call 661-799-2702 or visitย

The Canyon Theatre Guild is located at 24242 Main St., Newhall, CA.