News > Theatre Reviews: “A Christmas Carol” and “A Christmas Story”

I must say, this season we have had some fine examples of holiday theatre.

On Sunday, I attended the final performance of Charleston Stage‘s A Christmas Story at the Dock Street Theatre. This was one of the best overall productions that I’ve seen grace that stage in a while. Directed by the talented Julian Wiles, founder of Charleston Stage, this stage version of the family favorite film features Raphie and his plight to get a Red Ryder bb gun for Christmas.

Through the clever use of A/V equipment–projecting short films and stills on a screen above the stage–and the on stage narrator Adult Ralphie, we are guided through his 9th year holiday season much in the fashion every fan has come to adore. Ralphie’s story should be very familiar to any red-blooded American from the silver screen version. I was most impressed with the transition to the stage, and the ability of these actors to bring it to life before us. So much of the cast is made up by children, and from top to bottom, the youngest to oldest, this cast was remarkable.

I’ve rarely enjoyed a seasonal themed performance this much. Charleston Stage has put on an excellent production with A Christmas Story. I hope you got to see it.

The other holiday themed play I took in was The Village Rep‘s A Christmas Carol at their new digs in the Woolfe Street Playhouse. Now, this is not in the main stage, but a side stage production, in a small space that was surely as cold as Scrooge’s themselves. Word to the wise, dress warmly. It adds to the production.

Robbie Thomas has done a fantastic job directing just eight actors in the full story of Ebenezer Scrooge and his haunting by three spirits. You know I love a ghost story. This was a phenomenal production. The quality of the choreography, and I’m not talking dance, but simply the movements of the actors on stage, was unlike almost anything I’ve seen. It’s a fantastic interpretation that holds true to Charles Dickens glorious language with some thoroughly modern movements.

This was one of the most surprisingly fantastic performances I’ve seen in ages. The cast of eight was incredibly strong. Scrooge was played by one man the entire time, but the remaining actors filled out the rest of the very large cast with clever transitions and quick costume changes.

If you only see one holiday play this season, let it be A Christmas Carol by The Village Rep!

34 Woolfe Street, downtown Charleston. woolfestreetplayhouse.com.

Posted on December 20, 2012 by Art Mag.

Categories: Performing Arts, Review

Tags: A Christmas Carol, A Christmas Story, Charleston, Charleston Stage, Charleston Theatre, Christmas, Dock Street Theatre, Julian Wiles, Robbie Thomas, Village Rep, Woolfe Street Playhouse

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