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Straight from the Scrooge's mouth

For a Scrooge, Scott Brusven was surprisingly friendly and open to our questions. Actually, he's just playing the title role in the Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre's production of "Scrooge, the Musical." He'll hit the stage with his ghostly peep...

Scott Brusven

For a Scrooge, Scott Brusven was surprisingly friendly and open to our questions.

Actually, he's just playing the title role in the Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre's production of "Scrooge, the Musical." He'll hit the stage with his ghostly peeps for the first of eight shows Friday night.

When he's not being a cynical old curmudgeon, Brusven is the education director for the FMCT and the tour administrator for Northern Prairie Performing Arts. He sat down with us to talk about all things Scrooge.

Q. What characteristics do you try to bring out of the character of Scrooge?

A. I want to make Scrooge as real as possible, and to do that I pull on a lot of sources. ... As an actor, I watch people and I emulate. For Scrooge there's so many emotions that have to be brought out from the beginning of the play to the end of the play. ... There's a lot of different things that you have to focus on and hopefully hit all of them at the right time.

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Why do you think this character has been so enduring?

I believe it's because Charles Dickens wrote an amazing book, and literature finds itself repeating all over the place. ... There's all these different takes on ("A Christmas Carol"). There's these different ideas. And it's because it's a classic work. And thankfully we haven't forgotten the classic literature and we can still revive it and people can go and see a heartwarming story even though the beginning starts out really kind of mean and in a negative light. It's the fact that Scrooge changes and sees all these errors of his way and says 'OK, I'm going to be a better person.' And I think that that's why this story can play forever because it's rooted in something that is a classic story.

Who are your favorite Scrooges?

Every single one of them brings something new and that's the great thing about a classic work is that when Bill Murray takes on the role you know it's probably not going to be as serious as another actor who takes the role. And that, to me, is what's great about theater and what's great about interpretation. And I guess I like them all because I can take one thing from Albert Finney's movie, I can take one thing from Bill Murray, and then I can say, "Well, here's what I think." And no one's wrong because it's just a different style, it's a different interpretation, it's a different way of presenting it.

Why did you want to play this part?

Because it is such an iconic role in both the screen and on the stage, and I, really in the deeper parts of me, I'm a character actor. I love to create a character from the feet up.

If you go

- What: "Scrooge, the Musical"

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- When: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday; and again Wednesday through Dec. 16

- Where: Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre

- Info: Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors, $9 for students and $6 for children. Children younger than 3 not admitted. Group rates available. (701) 235-6778.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Shane Mercer at (701) 451-5734 Straight from the Scrooge's mouth J. Shane Mercer 20071206

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