A Christmas Carol (Barlow)

A Christmas Carol (Barlow)

by  Patrick Barlow

Full Length Play, Dramatic Comedy  /  3m, 2f

Patrick Barlow, writer of the Broadway and West End hit The 39 Steps, has retold Charles Dickens’ holiday classic, A Christmas Carol. This thrilling adaptation uses only five actors to bring some of Dickens' most beloved characters to life.
Read more +
A Christmas Carol (Barlow)

A Christmas Carol (Barlow)

by  Patrick Barlow

License Estimator

Use this tool for cost estimates based on your specific needs.

  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    3m, 2f
  • Duration

    Duration

    120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Adaptations (Literature), Christmas/Holiday
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    From Off-Broadway
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Appropriate for all audiences

Additional Info

Patrick Barlow, writer of the Broadway and West End hit The 39 Steps, has retold Charles Dickens’ holiday classic, A Christmas Carol. This thrilling adaptation uses only five actors to bring some of Dickens' most beloved characters to life. From Scrooge and Tiny Tim to Bob Cratchit and Mrs. Fezziwig, Barlow's A Christmas Carol uses nothing more than some simple props, fresh physicality, and the power of imagination to convey this timeless story of redemption. Witness Ebenezer Scrooge's transformation from a stingy miser to a man who generously celebrates the spirit of the season all year long, in this highly theatrical adaptation.
Read more +

Reviews

REVIEWS

"‘Tis the season for adaptations of Charles Dickens’ immortal A Christmas Carol, and if you think you’ve seen it all before, just wait until you see Patrick Barlow’s new adaptation...True to its source (a ghost story, after all), it has its frightening moments as well, beautifully done. And then there are the small touches that set this adaptation apart from Dickens’ original: the occasional anachronistic phrasing, fourth wall disintegration, and a dash of puppetry. No matter how many times you’ve experienced A Christmas Carol this version is not one to miss." - Stage Magazine, Read More

"From a certain angle, A Christmas Carol is a story about storytelling...This aspect of the Charles Dickens classic is the driving force behind playwright Patrick Barlow’s new adaptation...The entire show is performed by five actors, most of whom play multiple roles. Every time they switch characters, we’re reminded that we’re watching a live story unfolding in front of us." - TDF Stages, Read More

"Patrick Barlow injects a lot of humor into the piece. This comedy takes place because Barlow doesn’t keep strictly to the original text as he take liberties with language, the situation and, of course, the mood of the play." - Saratogian Theatre, Read More

"A Christmas Carol focuses on the political and social side of Victorian England, illuminating the joys and holiday traditions more than the religious view. As Scrooge claims at the end, "For we are all of us upon this earth a great family all together, Sir! Are we not dear Bob!," this is a entrancing and enlightened way to get into spirit of the season." - Curtain Up, Read More

RELATED ARTICLES ON BREAKING CHARACTER 

Holiday Magic: A CHRISTMAS CAROL How You’ve Never Seen It Before
by Bud Martin
November 16, 2015

Keywords

Aging, Death, Love, Memory

Considerations

Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Shoestring Budget
  • Large Stage
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups

Cautions

  • No Special Cautions

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $100 per performance

    This title is currently unavailable for licensing in the United States and Canada. Please contact your representative to note interest for future seasons.

Production

Details

  • Time Period: 19th Century
  • Duration: 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: London, England. Mid-1800's. 
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes

Casting

3m, 2f
ACTOR ONE (M)
Ebenezer Scrooge - standard English - 50-60

ACTOR TWO (M)
Bob Cratchit - cockney - 40
Marley - standard English - 50-60
Young Scrooge - standard - 16-19
Little Scrooge - standard - 8
Katie Cratchit - cockney - 9
Boy in street - cockney - 12
Frederick’s children - standard - 3-12
Various narrators, carol singers, debtors, spirits, skaters, ghostly helpers etc.

ACTOR THREE (F)
Mrs Lack - cockney - 40
Lavinia Bentham - standard - 35
Mrs Grimes - Northern English - 60
Fanny - standard - 18
Isabella - Sweet spoken Irish - 18-28
Spirit of Christmas Present - cockney/Music Hall/various 60
Frederick's Housemaid - cockney - 30
Various narrators, carol singers, debtors, spirits, skaters, ghostly helpers etc.

ACTOR FOUR (F)
Hermione Bentham - standard - 35
Spirit of Christmas Past - standard - 40
Constance - standard - 30
Mrs. Cratchit - cockney - 40
Scrooge's mother - standard - 40
Various narrators, carol singers, debtors, spirits, skaters, ghostly helpers etc.

ACTOR FIVE (M)
Frederick - standard - 35
Mr Grimes - Northern English - 60
Mr Fezziwig - Irish - 50
George - standard - 30
Peter Cratchit - cockney - 15
Abigail Cratchit - cockney - 9
Tiny Tim - cockney - 7
Spirit of Christmas Yet To Come - standard - 50
Passer-by - cockney - 20
Various narrators, carol singers, debtors, spirits, skaters, ghostly helpers etc.
See all +

Cast Attributes

  • Ensemble cast
  • Non-Traditional casting
  • Reduced casting (Doubling Possible)
  • Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle)

Casting Notes

This play is written specifically for five actors. Three men and two women. One actor plays Scrooge throughout. Everybody else plays everybody else.

More

Authors

Patrick Barlow

Besides his version of Lew Wallace’s Ben Hur, Patrick’s Olivier-nominated adaptation of A Christmas Carol has played off-Broadway and London’s West End while his 4-person adaptation of The 39 Steps has played in over forty countries world-wide, winning Olivier, Helpmann, Moliere and Tony Awards and making Patrick the m ...

View full profile

Patrick Barlow's A Christmas Carol premiered at the Delaware Theatre Company in December 2012, under the direction of Joe Calarco. 

Now Playing

Community Experiences