Northeast State Theater opens I, Ebenezer on Dec. 4

The holiday classic we know and love returns to the stage at Northeast State this December. Tickets are on sale now for the Northeast State Department of Theater’s I, Ebenezer a brilliant and original retelling of Ebenezer Scrooge’s Christmas adventure.

Adapted from the masterful novella A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, Northeast State’s own Brad McKenzie weaves the time-traveling Christmas tale in the age of steam…and robots!

The play is a family friendly production that deals with the human side of the beloved holiday story. I, Ebenezer tells the story of bitter old miser Ebenezer Scrooge, head of a multinational company that specializes in steam-powered android automatons. He is visited by a time-traveling stranger who takes him through inserts of his past and forces him to reexamine the choices he has made as well as how his choices impact the future of himself and all humanity.

Steampunk meets A Christmas Carol in I, Ebenezer.

McKenzie wrote the adaptation through the lens of the steampunk theme. Steampunk is a subgenre of speculative fiction, a fantasy story style that involves using steam-era technology to make highly complicated and advanced machines. Typically set in an anachronistic Victorian alternative history setting. It could be described by the slogan, “What the past would look like if the future had happened sooner.”

The costuming, make-up, and automaton look of Scrooge’s robots reflect this alternate world and coincide with the diverging paths Scrooge’s Victorian Britain faced during the mid-19th century. Could industrial growth and capitalism sustain a decent life for the poor or a shred of humanity for the rich?

The play stays true to Scrooge’s transformation as he faces a series of time jumping with a robot version of his former business partner Marley and a spunky time traveler from the future. The beloved characters of Bob Cratchit and Tiny Tim are on hand to round out the story. Audiences follow Scrooge – himself the embodiment of winter – as his cold, crooked heart is restored to the innocent goodwill he had known in his youth.
Dickens’ Carol was one of the greatest influences in rejuvenating the old Christmas traditions of England. While the play gives audiences joy, mirth, and life of Christmas through time, it also challenges audiences with unforgettable images of darkness, coldness, and death. The play never strays from asking the ages-old question, what does it mean to be a human being?

Production dates are Dec. 4 -6 and Dec. 11-13 at 7:30 p.m. at the Wellmont Regional Center for the Performing Arts on the College’s main campus at Blountville. Two matinee performances are scheduled on Dec. 7 and Dec. 14 at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $10 and free to Northeast State students who present valid student identification.

For information about tickets or how to purchase tickets call the Box Office at 423.354.5169 or email Travis Brooks at For general questions about the productions or the Theater Department contact Elizabeth M. Sloan at or call at 423.354.2479.

Official OSHA safety course set for Dec. 9-12

The Workforce Solutions department at Northeast State will present an official OSHA 30-hour General Industry course on safety and healthy work practices Dec. 9 – 12.

The course is ideal for any professional responsible for employee on-the-job safety and health work practices. This course provides successful participants with four days of information on current topics in occupational safety and health as enforced by the U.S. and Tennessee Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Course completion cards will be awarded from the OSHA National TOSHA_logo_blackraining Institute to each student who successfully completes the course.

The course will meet Dec. 9 – 12, 2014. Course hours are: Dec. 9, 10, and 11, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.; and Dec. 12: 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. Attendance at all four class sessions is required to receive course completion cards from TOSHA.

The class will be held on the College’s Blountville campus, 2425 Highway 75.

Course fee is $399 including books and all study materials. This course is offered in conjunction with Tennessee OSHA (TOSHA). For reservations, contact Diana Harrison at 423.354.5520 or

String Theory lights up Northeast State Nov. 24

Old instruments and blistering new tunes. That best describes the music of String Theory, the dynamic duo of violinist Daniel Blair and cellist James Ross, Jr.

These two virtuoso musicians present an entertaining, humorous, and inspirational tour through the history of music, from J.S. Bach to Beyonce with their infectious musicianship and live show. String Theory will ignite the theater stage at the Wellmont Regional Center for the Performing Arts on Nov. 24 at 7:00 p.m. with a free concert at Northeast State.

Blair and Ross have performed together for over 10 years playing more than 400 live performances. Through their talents, the duo adds music to their own stories, comedy sketches and inspiring messages using all genres like Classical, Pop, Cinema, Jazz, Bluegrass and even Rock. Blair’s focus in violin performance began at age 7 studying under Timothy Barrett at the Academy of Strings. He continued his musical study at the Hart School of Music, Appalachian State University and University of Tennessee at Knoxville. His accomplishments include statewide junior and senior division champion for strings under the Tennessee Music Teacher’s Association as well as being a founding member of the Tenacity Piano Trio.

Blair says his passion comes from exploring new ways to bring music to life. With violin as his primary instrument, he also composes, records, and produces music. He currently runs the string program at Blair Academy for the Arts. Ross, Jr., of Johnson City, has studied music since the age of five. He is classically trained in cello and piano.

String Theory - Daniel Blair and James Ross Jr.
String Theory – Daniel Blair and James Ross Jr.

Ross has performed with local and regional orchestras for over 10 years but truly appreciates the intimacy of small ensembles. He has performed as a live deejay as well as teaching music at Blair Academy for the Arts. He is currently completing his MBA at East Tennessee State University.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. For more information about the show, call 423.279.7669 or

2015 Edition Training offered for NFPA 70E Electric Arc Flash

Workforce Solutions of Northeast State is sponsoring a seminar on Dec. 5, 2014 focusing on the requirements for compliance with the 2015 edition NFPA 70E and the electrical arc flash hazard.

Understanding the definition of arc flash, along with video footage of actual arc flashes, will help participants understand this hazard. Arc flash calculations will be covered, as well as selection of proper personal protective equipment (PPE) to allow qualified persons to safely work within the arc flash boundary. Insulating voltage-rated tool and glove requirements will be discussed. Training for electrical workers and the Energized Work Permit will be covered. Techniques and ways to “engineer out” the hazard of arc flash will also be discussed.

arc flash
Arc Flash is an avoidable hazard.

The instructor, Bob Huddleston, is a Licensed Professional Engineer in the State of Tennessee and serves on the NFPA National Electrical Code-making Panel 6 as voting principal member.

Who should take this course?  Individuals interested in furthering their electrical training.

Class Dates: Dec. 5, 2014
Course Hours: 8 a.m. – Noon
Location: Blountville Campus, 2425 Highway 75
Fees: $195.00 per participant (includes all materials)

For assistance with registration or additional information, please contact Diana Harrison: or 423.354.5520.