A brand new stage adaptation of Charles Dickens’ beloved A Christmas Carol opened its world premiere season on Friday 7 December at Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC), kicking off a strictly limited two-week season.
Brisbane audiences were in for a Christmas treat, directed by award-winning Michael Futcher and adapted for stage by co-Artistic Director for shake & stir theatre co Nelle Lee, audiences received a sumptuous and surprising reimagining of Dickens’ classic story of compassion, forgiveness and redemption, getting them into the festive spirit. shake & stir theatre co, renowned for their innovative adaptations of popular fiction, brought the nostalgic Christmas story to life for Brisbane audiences following successful page to stage co-productions with QPAC including George’s Marvellous Medicine and Dracula.
The tale begins on a cold and gloomy Christmas Eve. Ebenezer Scrooge is spending his evening hunched over his coals, counting his fortune and cursing the happiness of others. After a ghostly night of unexpected visitors, each with an important lesson for Scrooge direct from the grave, Scrooge awakens on Christmas Day with a whole new outlook on life.
And reimagined Dickens certainly was. From a cast that could turn the bard’s grim writings into comical tales, to an alluring and captivating use of stage sets and technology, shake & stir theatre co enthralled audiences. Despite knowing the ending before taking our seats, we were left hanging on to every word, jumping high out of our chairs at every creak and mesmorised by the live musicians and yule-tide carolling. Lavish costumes traversed time, conceiving a neo-Victorian, gothic setting bringing ghosts, ghouls and characters into one world of storytelling. The set design provided a visual feast, complemented by a new atmospheric composition from composer, multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Salliana Campbell.
A Christmas Carol will run until Thursday 20 December – a must-see performance to rediscover your Christmas spirit.
Readers also enjoyed this review of North by Northwest.