Theater News Online
free issue
London Theatre Reviews
NY Theater Reviews
LTN Recommendations
NYTN Recommendations
Book Reviews
Movie Reviews
London Theatre Archives
NY Theater Archives
Latest New York News
Latest London News
NY News Archives
London News Archives
Peter Filichia's Monday Quiz
Dining and Travel
London Theatre Listings
NY Broadway Listings
Off-Broadway Listings
London Tickets
Advertise with us

Subscribe
Renew
Give a Gift


Logo

Adagio Teas
   Features  >  NY Theater Reviews

 
A CHRISTMAS CAROL
at Online

SOULFUL SCROOGE
By SANDY MACDONALD

  Ph: A Christmas Carol Live

Fed up with the thin gruel of tepid Zoom readings? Brace yourself for a riveting, fully realized and ultimately challenging A Christmas Carol, one that shakes the dust off a tried-and-true – if typically rather treacly – seasonal tradition.
 
Jefferson Mays, known for his multi-character tours de force (I Am My Own Wife, A Gentleman’s Agreement), here assumes some 50 roles, flipping mercurially among them with a slight shift in orientation or merely tone. Sometimes the transformation is effected by means of Ben Stanton’s brilliant lighting effects, or by a spectral reverb from sound designer Joshua D. Reid, ricocheting through the cavernous video set, a 1930 movie palace in Washington Heights.
 
Still, it’s principally Mays’ subtle legerdemain that informs each transformation, often in the blink of an eye. In some ways, his is a very internalized approach. He seems unafflicted by the impetus to impress, a pitfall for so many solo performers. May dives deep and fast into each persona – most touchingly here, in the character of hard-working, profoundly decent Bob Cratchit.
 
And it doesn’t require a heart of stone to identify with Mays’ Scrooge, about whom perhaps the most charitable epithet would be “task-oriented.” Leaving aside the story’s role as a parable of religious conversion, it also serves as a deep and humorous dive into the comforts to be found within the confines of an absolutist stance – in Scrooge’s case, avarice.
 
Though his external circumstances might appear grim, Scrooge’s inner world is a palace of self-righteousness, a hall of mirrors reflecting his worth. Far from cursing the darkness that envelops him (his choice), Scrooge preens over it, as proof of his exquisite thrift.
 
As many of us begin to emerge from our Covid burrows, Scrooge’s reawakening to the pleasures – and responsibilities – of community couldn’t come at a better time. In a nice Dickensian twist, the price of virtual admission ($50) will go to support shuttered theaters.

 


SUBSCRIBE TO New York Theater News
SUBSCRIBE TO London Theater News

SCHEDULE UPDATES -
Yes, Prime Minister contracts its run, while A Chorus Line expands its own.
POWERHOUSE OF THEATRE - After 11 years as the Almeida Theatre's artistic director, Michael Attenborough is stepping down to focus on directing. 

SONGS FROM THE HEART - Once the Tony-Award winning musical is set to hit London in January.


Wine, Fruit, and Gourmet Gift Baskets.
Privacy Notice   |   Front Page
Copyright © TheaterNewsOnline.com. All Rights Reserved.