By BO EMERSON / firstname.lastname@example.org
In the O. Henry short story “The Gifts of the Magi,” love triumphs over all for the impoverished but smitten couple, Jim and Della.
The actors playing the roles of Jim and Della in the Theatrical Outfit’s “The Gifts of the Magi” seem to have taken that message to heart, and are now planning to tie the knot.
Nick Arapoglou and Caroline Freedlund became acquainted during the Theatrical Outfit’s first production of the show, in 2012, when they also played Jim and Della. They have repeated those roles each year since.
During last year’s production they decided it was time for life to imitate art.
They’ve set a date for April 2015, and plan an outdoor ceremony in Seaside, Fla. The honeymoon will be in the Greek Islands, whence Arapoglou’s ancestors sprang. (Hence, the exotic name.)
Freedlund, whose family comes from Sweden, says she is delighted to move up in the alphabet. “I’m taking the name, I’m all in on this thing,” said 23-year-old Harrison High School graduate. “I’m excited to spend my life going ‘Arapoglou, A-R-A-P-O …’”
This is the third Christmas that the Theatrical Outfit has performed the seasonal musical in its downtown storefront playhouse.
Fans of the O. Henry story will know that the loving but penniless couple, Jim and Della, each sell their most valued possession to buy the other a Christmas present.
Nick and Caroline’s gestures have been no less romantic, but perhaps economically more prudent. For his first Christmas present she crafted a mixed media art object, incorporating all the menus, Playbills and movie tickets from their many dates, and included chopsticks from one of their favorite Japanese restaurants.
In return, Arapoglou created a video recap of their first months together, which culminated in a proposal. In the final scene his Labra-hound Manny wears a sign that reads, “Will You Marry Me?”
Apparently, it worked.
“The Gifts of the Magi” continues through Dec. 21. 7:30 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays. 2:30 p.m. Sundays and Dec. 20. Tickets $20-$50. Balzer Theater at Herren’s, 84 Luckie St. N.W., Atlanta. 678-528-1500, www.theatricaloutfit.org.