Ruth Lawrence is a late decorator. She doesn’t buy into the whole month-long, commercialized Christmas, feeling the significance of those 12 special days gets lost among the hustle and bustle.
For Lawrence, Dec. 23 is the marker of the Christmas season, and a perfect time to organize a heartwarming night of entertainment.
“When people leave this concert, they know it’s Christmas, and it’s an amazing way to head out into the night,” Lawrence said.
Lawrence, an actor/director/producer, is organizing the St. John’s Women’s Centre’s annual Shine Your Light on Tibb’s Eve fundraiser at the LSPU Hall, a cause Lawrence has been involved in for some time.
It’s also a cause which is close to her heart, she said, since anyone who knows her knows she’s had challenges of her own.
“I raised my son as a single mother and working artist, so there were times I struggled. In fact, Luke was born while I was between my second and third year in theatre school, so the only way I got through that final year was with tons of social supports from the community, friends and the Ontario government.
“Ever since that time, I’ve tried to help in any way I can, when I can. This fundraiser, which I hope continues on long after my involvement, is very important to raising funds and awareness of how much the St. John’s Women’s Centre contributes to our community.”
The centre is a non-profit organization that provides services for women, particularly those who have been marginalized, including housing, self-empowerment initiatives, a clothing boutique and personal care pantry, healthy living groups and individual support.
The lineup for this year’s show includes multiple 2012 MusicNL winner Katie Baggs, Sherry Ryan, Geraldine Hollett from The Once, Colleen Power and Chris Andrews of Shanneyganock. Lawrence’s partner, writer/performer Des Walsh, will also make an appearance, as will Beni Malone and Jamie Brace, who will perform a clowned-up version of “The Mummers Play,” an excerpt from Wonderbolt Circus’ Christmas show. The night will be hosted by writer/actor/comedian Greg Malone.
“The lineup is always incredible and their selections are usually quite varied, so that makes the job of programming the night really easy,” Lawrence said.
“I’m always surprised each year by some of the Christmas songs I hear done in an entirely new way or sometimes hear for the first time.”
The evening will also include a raffle and short live auction, as well as a door prize of flights for two to New York, donated by Porter Airlines.
“You are giving a gift to the Women’s Centre with your presence,” Lawrence said.
“A night at the Hall with this list of performers will be magical, no doubt.”
Tickets for Shine Your Light on Tibb’s Eve are $45 (which includes a tax receipt for $25, as well as a complimentary beverage before the show), and are available by calling the LSPU Hall at 753-4531 or online at www.rca.nf.ca.
Showtime is 8 p.m.