‘A Christmas Carol’: An old chestnut with a new vigor

Camille Bounds

“The Nutcracker,” “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “How The Grinch Stole Christmas,” even “Mr. Magoo” and “Sesame Street” are traditional Christmas theatre toddies. But you must add “A Christmas Carol” if you haven’t already. This delightful and charming story by Charles Dickens is served up with our Christmas turkey every year somewhere, someplace, everywhere in the world.

The Rep is bringing it back after last year’s successful run with Richard Farrell reprising his role as the miserly, grump who turns generous and loveable after visits from ghosts who show him what he really needs to know. I really don’t think I have to go into the story. If you aren’t familiar with it, you must be from another planet and should get over to the Rep and find out what this well-done offering is about.

A solid cast of 18 talented, seasoned adults and charming children play 50 roles and fill “A Christmas Carol” with joy, music and memories to be treasured.

Eight-year-old Alison Lubiens as little Alice Cratchit and 7-year-old Zachary Boston as Tiny Tim are delightful additions and carry off their roles with a professional and delightful attitude.

The meticulous adaptation and direction of Rick Lombardo draws the best from the actors and produces a captivating experience.

As usual, the Rep’s creative team brings in a show that is easy to hear, see and watch with Peter Colao’s scenic designs, Frances Nelson McSherry’s costumes, Dawn Chiang’s lighting and music director Kate Ryan – adding the right touch and mood.

“A Christmas Carol” is wholesome and pleasant, and is a moment in time that should be seen and savored. Children and grown-ups alike will adore it. Cynics might even get a warm twinge in their heart – and God knows a warm twinge might be just the thing we need in these uncertain times.

Camille Bounds is the arts and entertainment editor for the Western Division of Sunrise Publications.

Where: San Jose Repertory Theatre, 101 Paseo de San Antonio, San Jose
Through: Dec. 24
Tickets: $17.50 – $79
Details: (408) 367-7255 or visit www.sjrep.com.

Leave your comments