THE Australian premiere of a new stage adaptation of A Christmas Carol – written as if narrated by and featuring Charles Dickens himself – is coming to Harbour Theatre.
Adapted by David Edgar and directed by Ann Speicher and SJ Christiner, the Dickens classic tells the story of the mean and miserable Scrooge.
Visited by three ghosts on Christmas Eve, he is shown scenes from his past, present and future, designed to make him change his ways.
“It’s a well-loved tale with a lot of Christmas spirit,” Ann said.
“This new version has Dickens walking in and out of scenes with his friend and biographer John Forster.”
With a large cast that includes several children, Ann has various challenges in putting the show together.
“It can be quite a mission to get them all together,” she said. “The story is scenic and moves quickly from scene to scene, so I need a lot of people at rehearsals at one time.
“The Dickensian era is very different from modern day so the attitudes, speech and movement have to be appropriate to the era, which has taken some teaching.”
With a wealth of stage experience, Ann has appeared in numerous shows at Harbour, Garrick, Stirling, Melville and Old Mill Theatres and has also directed Ghost Train, Managing Carmen, Don’t Dress For Dinner and Pardon Me, Prime Minister at Harbour Theatre.
Ghost Train was nominated for the Hywell Williams Award for Technical Achievement at the annual Finley Awards in 2020.
Most recently, Ann has performed in Full Circle, Into The Woods and Freaky Friday at Stirling Theatre and The Kitchen Sink at Harbour Theatre.
“A Christmas Carol appealed because I really enjoy the story and felt it would be a lovely show to present, especially for the time of year,” she said.
“We’re aiming for the traditional costumes that go along with the tale to remain faithful to Dickens’ original work.”
A Christmas Carol plays at 7.30pm November 25, 26, 30, December 2, 3, 7, 9 and 10 with 2pm matinees November 27, December 4 and 11. Tickets are $25.50, $23.50 concession and $20.50 students – book at www.TAZTix.com.au or call TAZTix on 9255 3336.
Harbour Theatre is located at 16 Lochee Street, Mosman Park.