This celebrated adaptation by Charles Jones of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is rich with thrilling ensemble
music, alive with color and movement and is created to tell this great and enduring tale in a manner that people of all ages will enjoy. Featuring a cast of 24, live musicians,
and Broadway-style scenery and costumes, audiences cherish this sumptious annual holiday classic.
Here is Charles Jones’ introduction to the piece:
“I think of this adaptation and the production of A Christmas Carol as a masque. It is not a musical comedy. The songs do not move the story forward; they stand apart, completely separate from the text. Each song or carol was chosen for the dramatic atmosphere it contributes to the total experience. The songs are traditional but John Bennett’s scoring is contemporary and exquisitely beautiful.
The language and the story of the text are faithful to Dickens. I have taken one major liberty. The original novella was published in 1843. I have moved the time forward forty years to 1886. By this time the secular English Christmas customs were fairly well established as we know them today. By 1886 the German Christmas Tree had become an English form. We also found that the costume silhouettes from the 1880’s were more attractive and created more readily a ‘Dickens Christmas look,’ not unlike those found in the paintings of Currier and Ives.
True to masque form, the entire production is presentational. It unashamedly takes advantage of live theatre. The characters are larger than life could ever be. The sets and costumes were faithfully drawn from reality, and then, fancifully carried past reality. I think Inigo Jones would have been delighted.
This Caravan production has been complimented repeatedly by those saying that the show looks, ‘like Christmas Cards,’ ‘like Christmas should be,’ ‘like Christmas in your mind when you were a child.’ The credit for this wizardry must go to my colleague, James Othuse, whose talent as a designer can frequently make dreams come true.”
In Mr. Jones’ adaptation for the stage, one actor plays Ebenezer Scrooge. Each of the 24 member ensemble supports both the story and the music with exceptional ensemble singing and dancing, while each taking on a significant character as the story unfolds.
The current directors and designers of this production do not attempt to stray from Charles Jones’ original concept. As stewards of the production they strive to convey to each company of players the integrity and the magic that are intrinsic to the piece.