This intimate and poignant production embarks on a UK tour (November – December 2019) to Dickens’ favourite places, Winchester & Andover. The event comes to Discovery Centre in Winchester on 29th November and The Lights in Andover on 3rd December. Inspired by the philanthropic message of the piece, this tour will raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital.
This festive season European Arts Company returns following a highly successful 2018 run
of A Christmas Carol. Inspired by Dickens’s own charitable work, the 2019 tour is in aid of Great
Ormond Street Hospital, reflecting the heart-warming message of Scrooge’s philanthropic
transformation in this perfect Christmas story.
Audiences will be thrilled to experience A Christmas Carol as Dickens himself performed it over
150 years ago. He was the first writer to publicly act out his own work and, in doing so, invented
a new genre of performance. Working with the script Dickens used, actor John O’Connor plays
over 20 characters, skilfully drawing the audience into this Victorian ghost story about the
power of compassion and generosity to transform lives.
Deftly taking them from Dickens’s own warm study, to Scrooge’s freezing house and the
Cratchits’ welcoming dinner table even the most miserly of hearts will be stirred this festive
season. Beautiful sets by Tom Paris are based on a combination of Dickens’s travelling cases and
the warmth of his London sitting room, lending real intimacy to this poignant production. This
Christmas, audiences can experience what it must have been like to be in the presence of
Charles Dickens himself!
This is a beautifully intimate piece of storytelling with a familial, cosy atmosphere. It embraces
its classical origin and has a true heart-warming Christmas spirit (York Press, 2018).
John O’Connor lives in Rochester where Dickens grew up and set many of his stories including
Great Expectations, The Pickwick Papers and The Mystery of Edwin Drood. O’Connor says, In these times of austerity and uncertainty, this beautiful story is as relevant now as it was in 1843.
It’s fascinating to see how Dickens communicated it so directly to his audiences in public
performances. He made them laugh and cry in equal measure, taking them on a magical
journey and imparting the true spirit of Christmas. The show is a chance for audiences to feel
what that was like. It’s a joy to do and we will have some fun along the way.
Laura Savory, Head of Community Fundraising at Great Ormond Street Hospital says:
We are delighted that European Arts Company is raising money through their production of A Christmas Carol to support the valuable work of Great Ormond Street Hospital. Charles Dickens was instrumental in helping to support the hospital when it was founded in 1852 and did some early public readings of A Christmas Carol in aid of GOSH.
This production has been generously supported by Arts Council England.
Photo: A Christmas Carol (John O’Connor) – courtesy of David Bartholemew