Theatre round-up: A triple helping of festive Dickens this December


This month’s theatre round-up by Paula Walker has a distinctly festive feel, with not one, but three adaptations of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol to choose from.

While The Quarry, The Place and Sharnbrook Mill Theatre are all welcoming back socially distanced audiences, some performances can also be streamed digitally.

Coming up at the Quarry Theatre…

Christmas Gothic
Wednesday 9 December 7.30pm
Tickets: £12.50

Christmas: a time to remember the past, celebrate the present, and look to the future; a time of feasts and festivities; of holly and mistletoe; a time of visits and visitations.  A time of ghosts.

Come in from the cold and enter into the Christmas spirit as a dark and spectral woman tells haunting tales of the festive season, lighting a candle to the frailties of human nature and illuminating the cold and chilling depths of the bleak, wintry dark…

Dyad Productions resurrects a Victorian tradition by presenting three seasonal tales of terror to scintillate the gooseflesh for dark Christmas nights.

Adapted and performed by Rebecca Vaughan (Jane Eyre: An Autobiography, Dalloway, Austen’s Women, I, Elizabeth).  Directed by Elton Townend Jones (Jane Eyre: An Autobiography, Dalloway, The Unremarkable Death of Marilyn Monroe)

A Christmas Carol
Friday 11 December 7.30pm

Dickens’ mystical Christmas fable brought to life – a perfect Christmas treat!

Olivier Award winner, Guy Masterson, veteran of many smash hit solo works such as Under Milk Wood, Animal Farm and Shylock, now brings us Dickens’ classic festive fable.

Famed for bringing multiple characters to vivid life, Masterson recreates Scrooge, Marley, the Fezziwigs, Tiny Tim et al in an enchanting, performance that will dazzle and linger long in the memory. Guaranteed to get you into the Christmas Spirit – in many more ways than one.

It’s Beginning to Look a lot like Christmas
Saturday 12 December 7.30pm
Tickets: £15

‘It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas’ will be a fun-filled evening of Christmas Jazz, hosted by a trio led by vocalist James Hudson, fresh from his sell out 2019 Christmas show at Pizza Express Jazz Club, Soho.

It also features trumpeter Tom Syson and pianist Joe Hill. Be sure to buy your tickets now for this light-hearted show!

The Ghost of a Smile
Friday 18 December 7.30pm
Tickets: £12.50

From the team that brought you “Spitfire Solo”, “Bond!”, and “The Six-Sided Man” comes the perfect Ghostly experience as we head towards Christmas.

Two of Charles Dickens’ creepy tales – with a comic twist. Tales with a tingle, but also a giggle. Two yarns to chill but also charm.

Like “The Woman in Black” – but funnier, with fewer people…

Play@Home: The Gift of Winter (digital)
Videos available from 27 November until 25 December (links will be emailed to you)
Tickets: £10.00 per household

A do-it-yourself Christmas show guided by Lyngo’s fun instructional videos.

In the beginning of years, when the world was so new, the four seasons lined up to get their colours and crowns, their toys and their moods.

When it came time for Winter there was nothing left except a wet white blanket which made him so sad that he pulled it over his head and wouldn’t come out to play… until a child took him on a journey through a garden of delights, climbing the ladder of the trees up to a shining star…

Lyngo Theatre have developed a show that you can actually do at home, not just watch.

By following the instructional videos in the weeks leading up to Christmas, you’ll make props and table-top sets from recycled materials and household objects, invent your own sensory sessions and take a creative-play journey together as a family through a garden of delights.

We’ll provide music, songs and narration so you can tell the story of how Winter got its colours, creating your own Christmas tree (with some very special decorations). At the end of this you’ll have made, played and stayed together which, after all, is the true meaning of Christmas!

For further information and to book tickets, head to their website here.

And over at the Place Theatre on Bradgate Road…

Kites Poetry Workshop (Digital event)
Thursday 10th December 4pm
Tickets: £6

Poet Simon Mole is a national poetry day ambassador who has shared stages with John Cooper-Clarke, Kate Tempest and Simon Armitage.

Ideal for 4-8year olds and costs just £6.

Every Time a Bell Rings (Physical and digital)
Friday 18 – Wednesday 23 December
Tickets: £14 / concessions £12

Every Time a Bell Rings is a festive collection of heart-warming, emotional and comical stories inspired by the diverse Bedford community.

Using a mixture of live and pre-recorded performances, including interviews and stories, all collected and reworked in Mangled Yarn’s own raucous style – so expect lots of music, laughs and silliness thrown into the mix – the greatest gift we can give you this Christmas.

Alongside a live, socially distanced audience, Every Time a Bell Rings will also be available to Live Stream or Download, so even if you can’t watch live in person for whatever reason, we can still reach out to you… it turns out it IS a wonderful life.

And remember, every time a bell rings an angel gets its wings!

A Christmas Carol (Physical and Digital)
Sunday 27 – Tuesday 31 December
Tickets: Family ticket £29 / Adult £10 / concessions £7

Just how many characters can one man play? Can he sing and make jokes at the same time?

Join Lamphouse Theatre this Christmas to find out.

Ebenezer Scrooge hates Christmas, but the Cratchits are full of festive cheer even though times are hard. Can four ghostly apparitions teach Scrooge an important lesson in time for Christmas morning?

With live music, packed full of family fun and side splitting comedy, Lamphouse’s one man version of A Christmas Carol will bring you some much needed Christmas cheer!

All being well, A Christmas Carol will be performed live at The Place Bedford, with socially distanced seating. If, for any reason, the show cannot go ahead, a film version will be available for you to watch online.

Visit the Place Theatre website for full details of all productions, ticket information and booking.

And wrapping things up at Sharnbrook Mill Theatre…

A Dickens of a Christmas
A bah humbug of a show!
Saturday 12 December at 3pm (7.30pm performance is now sold out)
Tickets: £17.50

God bless us, everyone… the Sharnbrook Mill Theatre is opening its doors again.

The award-winning theatre is proud to announce that the great, great, grandson of Charles Dickens will be performing two shows of his special one-man act this month.

Gerald Dickens will present his own adaptation of “A Christmas Carol”, playing over 30 characters using vocal and physical talents to bring each scene vividly to life.

It will be the first performance the theatre has hosted since the country went into lockdown in March.

The event is in aid of the Cool-Down Appeal, to fund air conditioning in the theatre.

Full details on the Sharnbrook Mill Theatre website.

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