San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

‘Oliver!’ in Spanish to Premier in Monteverde

The world-famous musical Oliver! Based on the classic Charles Dickens novel Oliver Twist, will premiere in Monteverde this August with a new Spanish translation. The exciting show joins comedy and tragedy, lively song and dance, and biting social commentary.

Far Corners Community Musical Theatre, a non-profit theater organization based in the United States, will produce the show with cast, crew and orchestra drawn from both the local community and abroad.

Set in 19th century England, the show tells the story of an orphan raised in a workhouse until he is kicked out for the unspeakable crime of requesting a second helping of supper. This is just the beginning of Oliver’s troubles, as he soon finds himself tossed about in the underbelly of London among an assortment of characters, not all of them with honorable intentions.

Far Corners Community Musical Theatre (FCCMT) has been working with talented youth in Monteverde and in other remote areas of the world since 2005 to present full-fledged Broadway musicals. Bringing together people from different cultures and socio-economic classes, the organization deliberately chooses challenging shows that address issues relevant to society today. The two principal themes in Oliver! – domestic violence and exploitation of street children – are social ills that continue to plague our world nearly two centuries after Dickens authored the original text.

Rather than shying away from sensitive topics, Far Corners encourages the young people in the cast to grapple with difficult issues and prepares them to face real-life issues with more understanding and compassion. “Oliver!” first opened in London in 1960 and quickly earned its place among history’s greatest shows. A film version was released in 1968 and received six Academy Awards, including best picture.

Just last year, a new production starring British comedian Rowan Atkinson (Mr. Bean) opened in London, and led to a professional translation of the show into Spanish for the Colombian premiere in September, 2009.

Far Corners is the first amateur company to acquire the license for this translation, so the production in Monteverde will be the world premiere by an amateur cast.

Performances will be staged Aug. 5-7, at 7 p.m., Bromelias Amphitheater, Monteverde. For more information, please contact, call 8749-5945, or visit the FCCMT website at

–Lisa Burns

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