by Lorie Lewis Ham
My Christmas season isn’t complete until I have seen A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens in some form, as it is one of my favorite Christmas stories. This year I got a jump-start on that by seeing it on stage presented by Good Company Players at 2nd Space in Fresno.
In case there are any out there who have never seen A Christmas Carol (if so where have you been?), here is a brief synopsis of the story. Ebenezer Scrooge is a stingy, hardhearted businessman who cares for nothing but money. He especially despises Christmas and anything connected to it. On Christmas Eve one year he is visited by the spirit of his old business partner Jacob Marley and given a final chance to change his life and escape a miserable fate upon death. Scrooge is then visited by three spirits–the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future, who show him who he once was, how he has affected the lives of those in the present, and what his and other’s futures hold. I believe this is a wonderful story of redemption–showing that it is never too late to change. It also portrays the true spirit of Christmas.
In this production, Mark Norwood, more often seen in his role as Artistic Director for Reedley’s River City Theatre Company, takes on the role of Scrooge and plays it brilliantly. The different twist in this production, directed by Max and Nicholle Debbas, is that most of the rest of the roles are played by college age actors on down to elementary school. I found this to be a refreshing twist and they all did a good job. I was concerned that the difference in age between them and Mark would seem odd, but it didn’t. Having seen so many different takes on this show, it was refreshing to see a new one. Ken Stocks, also from Reedley and another older though definitely not old member of the cast, did a fine job as Bob Cratchit. Brian Freet was wonderfully creepy as Marley, and also played Mr. Fezziwig.
The sets were very minimal in this production, but also very creative, so it worked. If like me, your Christmas isn’t complete without seeing A Christmas Carol, be sure to catch this production. If you are among the few who have yet to see A Christmas Carol–what are you waiting for? This show will be on stage at 2nd Space until December 22. Tickets can be purchased through their website or at the door.
Check out more of KRL’s Arts & Entertainment articles here.