Last week we attended a performance of Dicken’s A Christmas Carol. Mid-January seemed like a strange time for a Christmas story but we thought it might be fun. It was performed by a small theater group here in Mojacar, all British.
I grew up listening to the dramatized version on an LP record with actor Ronald Coleman playing Ebeneezer Scrooge. Film versions, Basal Rathbone, George C. Scott, Alistar Sim, all were fine but Ronald Colman’s rich baritone voice and my imagination was the version that for me, made Christmas. We listened to each year while trimming our Christmas tree. Seventy years later I believe I can still recite much of the script with no effort.
The small, 50 seat theater near us played to six sold out performances, we went the last night and had been told how good it was.
Our first surprise was the opening scene where Scrooge’s poor abused, underpaid, clerk, toiling away in the cold room, is Mrs. Cratchit. Bob, the clerk in Dicken’s story is never seen or mentioned.
The ghost of Christmas Past takes Scrooge to his boyhood and then the last meeting with his young love who tells him he’s changed, he only loves money now. That should be the end of her, but it’s not.
The ghost of Christmas Present takes Ebeneezer to the home of the poor Cratchits where Mrs. Cratchit lives with her five children and her mother.
The characters are adequately played, the five children were great, and the effects achieved with minimal scenery was very impressive. It was the last scene that sent me into shock.
Scrooge’s lost love has become a doctor, still bitter over his selfish quest for riches. She learns of Tiny Tim’s affliction and cures him, as Scrooge turns into a beneficent generous human being the play ends with them kissing and declaring love at last.
Oh My Word!