A Christmas Carol - review
The Old Vic

Words by: Adelaide Obeng | Published: Wednesday, January 30, 2019 9:36 AM

The show was successful and delightful last year but was reborn with meaning for this year.


A Christmas Carol at The Old Vic a brilliant start to the festive season.

Jack Thorne’s version of the Charles Dickens classic, was alive, the message fleshed out anew and the acting moving.


Scrooge played by Stephen Tompkinson was strong from start to finish. We were taken on the journey of Scrooge, the inner struggle, the painful past, the paths not taken. The wonderful dynamism in this was that it was clear this was not just an angry man for angry’s sake. But a man who had been hurt by the world and therefore had become shut off to it, a man who had experienced adversity and therefore decided on a (not so, but) reasonable course of action. How important it is in a world where so many suffer. In a time when we need more empathy and understanding towards each other. Where our decisions and paths in life are seemly decided almost at birth that we watch this man, this scrooge be reborn.


Nicola Hughes as Christmas Present, got us into the argument of the piece. It was a joy to watch her. Challenging, intellectual and fun.


The production itself is wonderfully put together and complimentary, from the warm glow of the hanging lanterns to the minimal structured set. The live music, mini orchestra and the Christmas carol-singing sprinkles magic all over this production.


The live music, mini orchestra and the Christmas carol-singing sprinkles magic all over this production

Audience involvement is key to this production. In all a sensory experience for our tastes, sight and sound. The staging is also inclusive with audience seated on stage and on either side of an emerging catwalk.


We were gifted with nuggets of wisdom throughout. “We are all made but we all make.” Dickens was a man who clearly couldn't turn his back on suffering and 175 years later his writing is still urging us to do the same.


A Christmas Carol at The Old Vic a brilliant start to the festive season.



NEED TO KNOW: A Christmas Carol was at the Old Vic from 24 Nov 2018 to 19 Jan 2019 | read our 2017 review of A Christmas Carol





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