Home 2012-2013 SEASON A CHRISTMAS CAROL: THE MUSICAL NOTES ON THE PLAY
An Abundance of Charity
About four years ago I was asked to work on A Christmas Carol: The Musical at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. Maybe like many of you, who groan and roll your eyes at the commercialization of the holidays, who cringe (as that season seems to start earlier and earlier), I was less than enthusiastic about yet another version of the Dickens classic—and about starting my holiday season in October.
Don’t misunderstand. I am a big, fat, crafty, flour-covered Christmas lover! I decorate and bake with the best of them—but, really, who needs ANOTHER Christmas Carol? However, a job is a job, and one Indian summer afternoon I settled in with the script (of this version of the show) as well as Charles Dickens’ novel. As the pages turned, and I was drawn back to Victorian England, I remembered the story’s underlying message: the need for charity in society as a whole.
In Dickens' words:
I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come round—apart from the veneration due to its sacred name and origin, if anything belonging to it can be apart from that—as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time; the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys.
Humbled, I went to work on this charming show, mindful of its theme and message—as well as its entertainment value—and needless to say, I had the time of my life.
When imagining what would be my first show as a director here at PTC, after becoming Artistic Director, there seemed to be no better choice than A Christmas Carol: The Musical. With Mr. Dickens' message in mind, I was thrilled to be able to join with Wells Fargo in our Abundance and Charity Food Drive to give back to this community who has welcomed me so warmly.
The show itself is a gift for our audience, and an opportunity for us to all remember the true spirit of the holiday season.
~ Karen Azenberg