Opening night of Encore Theater’s “A Christmas Carol” was by far the most enjoyable version of the Charles Dickens classic that I have ever seen. With a cast made up of some familiar faces as well as some experiencing Encore for the first time, the show seemed much more vibrant and faster paced than the typical telling.
A fantastic multi-level stage allows not only for great use of limited space but serves as a refreshing departure from traditional single level stage design and sets the show apart in how the actors move about and look out over the audience.
While there are the expected tender moments and some wardrobe trickery that allows for a sweet surprise from one of the “ghosts,” one of the biggest surprises from this rendition is the number of laughs. Along with the fantastic acting and singing, these aspects of the show add newness to the story, yet, per theater aficionado Perry Luhn, this particular telling is much closer to the original novella than we usually see. That these actors, directors, and crew could take such a well known show and make it so fresh and enjoyable is a credit to their hard work and talent!
The show runs Dec. 1 through Dec. 3. Friday and Saturday shows are at 8 p.m. and Sunday is 2 p.m.
Jim Patton, Elida