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Julian Wiles, Founder and Producing Artistic Director
Marybeth Clark, Associate Artistic Director

November 22, 2010

Directing Christmas Carol, by Artistic Director Julian Wiles

Filed under: Back Stage Blog — julianw @ 11:11 am

Though this is Charleston Stage’s 18th Christmas Carol, A Ghost Story of Christmas, we always treat this show as if it’s one we’ve never done before.  This year there are new scenic pieces, scores of new costumes, we’ll have strolling musicians on stage and there are even some new lines here and there.  Of course we don’t change everything (we always keep Scrooge and Tiny Tim) but each year we look for new elements to discover and explore.  This year, only one cast member is reprising a role they’ve done before and most of the cast are completely new to A Christmas Carol.  Our Scrooge, Brian Porter had never even seen another production of  A Christmas Carol.  This has made rehearsals this year especially delightful as actors rediscovered in a new light all of these beloved characters.  Walking in the shoes of these characters for the first time they’ve found new takes on these familiar faces.

And what characters these are!  Dickens’s A Christmas Carol has lasted all these years (his other five Christmas books are largely forgotten) because his characters are all too human.  He recognized their humanity and all their failings but also their potential for change.  He shows us that if an “odious, stingy old sinner” like Ebenezer Scrooge can learn to embrace his fellow man with generosity, perhaps there’s hope for the rest of us!  The belief that a new day can dawn for each us, that even in the depths of desperation and despair there is always a glimmer of hope, is a theme that runs through many of Dickens’s books and none more so than in A Christmas Carol, A Ghost Story of Christmas.

And so a new production of A Christmas Carol, A Ghost Story of Christmas dawns this year,  a production made even more special by its return to the beautifully restored Dock Street Theatre.  Now you will once more be close to the action—so close that I have no doubt you will bask in the warm glow of this timeless story.  Merry Christmas!

Brian J. Porter as Ebenezer Scrooge and Gabriel Wright as Jacob Marley.

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