A Christmas Carol is perhaps one of the most well-known festive tales. And this year there’s two versions on stage in Greenwich.
Charles Dickens had close ties to Greenwich, enjoying the fair and the Trafalgar Tavern. He gave public readings at Greenwich Literary Institution in 1866 too. It’s no wonder the area often popped up in his stories, from Bleak House to Sketches by Boz. So, it’s a fitting place to watch A Christmas Carol.
A Christmas Carol at Greenwich Theatre
For just a few dates this month, an authentic adaptation of A Christmas Carol heads to Greenwich Theatre, starring John O’Connor.
Dickens originally wanted to be an actor and A Christmas Carol was the first public performance he gave of his own work. And he enacted it more than 150 times. With his magnetic stage presence, expressive voice and power of characterisation, the public were enthralled. Remarkably, Dickens made more money from his readings than all of his novels and stories put together.
Now, this authentic production will recreate the spirit of those original readings. Using Dickens’s own public reading scripts and eyewitness accounts of him on stage, this performance is a more intimate affair than you’d normally see. It’s a great way to travel back in time and experience the tale as audiences in the 1860s would have. So, enjoy a seasonal treat in the spirit of Christmas past, present and future. And just to make you feel a bit more Christmas spirited, this production will be in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital, which Dickens helped to found.
When: Monday 6th December 2021 at 7.30pm and Monday 13th December 2021 at 2.30pm & 7.30pm
Where: Greenwich Theatre, Crooms Hill, Greenwich, London SE10 8ES
£: Tickets cost £14.50 – £17
More info: greenwichtheatre.org.uk
A Christmas Carol at the Old Royal Naval College
A light-hearted, musical version of A Christmas Carol is also taking place at the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich.
It’s taking place in the magnificent surroundings of the Painted Hall. This ornate space is affectionately known as Britain’s Sistine Chapel. So, it’s a great setting for the play. And this adaptation is a vibrant new production by Goblin Theatre. This atmospheric musical show features original songs and music, performed live by a talented cast of actor-musicians.
Inspired by the Old Royal Naval College’s Dickensian links, this adaptation of A Christmas Carol evokes the historical figures and ‘ghosts’ of the Painted Hall to bring this iconic ghost story to life. It’s a fast-paced, funny and spooky show, creating the ideal festive treat for all the family. Expect Fezziwig’s party to transform the Painted Hall into a real-life ceilidh! And if you fancy an extra treat, The Painted Hall Café has plenty of Christmassy refreshments to scoff before or after the show.
As well as A Christmas Carol, there are plenty of other festive activities at the Old Royal Naval College. Families can enjoy a free Make History day on 12th December. Have a go at making mini wreaths and Christmas crackers just like the ones found in Victorian Britain. Or on 19th December, children can use props and percussion to delve into the story of Scrooge and the ghosts who inspire him to change his ways in Scrooge Spooked.
When: Friday 3rd – Thursday 23rd December 2021
Where: Old Royal Naval College, King William Walk, Greenwich, London SE10 9NN
£: Tickets cost £10 – £19.50
More info: ornc.org