A Christmas Carol is one of my favourite Christmas stories. It is about more than just being kind and showing compassion to others, it addresses the importance of giving to those less fortunate than us (an important subject for its author Charles Dickens). It is a beautiful, heart-warming story of redemption and charity. And if it is done correctly, it makes me cry. Last Friday, I was moved to tears watching A Christmas Carol at The Rose Theatre Kingston.
I'm not going to go into the story. If you don't know what it's about, then you have real problems you need to sort out. Ciaran McConville adapted and directed this production. And it is simply beautiful. The acting is superb. Martin Ball is the perfect Scrooge. I throughly enjoyed Paul Hawkyard as the Ghost of Christmas Present (and Fezziwig and Charity Gent). And the Rose Youth Group are outstanding. The show cleverly uses music, lighting and projections to make you feel like you are right there in a dream with Scrooge on his life-changing journey.
I went to A Christmas Carol with a friend and our two daughters (who are also friends). We all enjoyed the show, though my daughter did get scared when she saw the ghost of Jacob Marley. Moozles was fine after some reassurance and hand-holding. But I think most children seven and older would be fine to watch this play.
We count ourselves very lucky to live in close proximity to the Rose Theatre Kingston and to be able to watch family shows there quite often. The Rose puts on top-notch shows that you would expect to see in the West End (some do go on there, and some West End shows come here). The theatre itself is based upon the original Elizabethan Rose Theatre, with circular seating and an open/thrust stage to make every show feel intimate.
A Christmas Carol runs at the Rose Theatre Kingston until the 3rd January 2016. Don't be a scrooge and book your tickets before it is sold out. You won't regret it.
Photo credit: all photos of the show by Mark Douet
We were invited to the press preview of A Christmas Carol for the purpose of this review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.