Bob & Carol &
Tim & Adrian

A Christmas Carol, a Dallas Theater Center production
at the Arts District Theater through Dec 27. Playwright:
Adapted by Adrian Hall and Richard Cumming from the
story by Charles Dickens. Director: Ken Bryant

By Betsy Thaggard
Good King Adrian looked down
Upon his barn-like theater
Wondered what the Dickens he
Should do with this year's feature.
Kept it simple, full of cheer,
Kept the audience humming,
Reminding them, like every year,
That Christmas time is coming!

O Eugene Lee, O Eugene Lee
Familiar is thy stage set:
We see a slum with clotheslines hung
An office dull for Cratchit.
O choke the crowds with fog and smoke!
Rise from the floor, Past Christmas ghost!
Fall from the eaves, finale snow,
O Christmas Carol redux.

God rest ye merry, Cafe Noir,
Your music's short but sweet
And in between, the actors sing
Without your pleasant beat.
The dancing's fun, the staging's fine,
Wood floors clump under feet,
It's loud but it keeps us awake, waiting for Scrooge,
It's loud but it keeps us awake.

I saw three actors on the stage
In Christmas Carol, in Christmas Carol,
As Cratchit, wife, and nephew Fred,
In Christmas Carol one evening.
John Davies' Bob's a great milquetoast
In Christmas Carol, in Christmas Carol
Ms. Gehringer's insuff'rable,
Her accent slips and she's silly.

Sean Hennigan plays Scrooge's kin
In Christmas Carol, in Christmas Carol,
The other cast has tons o' fun
In Christmas Carol each evening.

We three Ghosts of Christmas are
Clad in costumes way past past bizarre
Ryland Merkey's 'Past' is jerky
Dressed in white poolside drag.
O...Arterberry, all in green,
Jivin' 'Present', ain't you mean!
'Future' Pritchett: silent, backlit,
Like Darth Vader to extreme.

Hark! the corpse of Marley flies
Cross the ceiling, past our eyes
Poor Jack Willis, harnessed tight
Shocks the kids and folks alike.
Gruesome man, his makeup's maudlin
Undigested beef, Scrooge calls him.
Flying 3-D ghosts? Okay,
But we'll take a hologram any day.

Dashing cross the stage,
Chewing scenery all the way,
Martin Rayner's Ebenezer's
Like a ham souffle.
We love his tour de ghosts,
As a grouch he's just okay,
Still, we're glad he's cast 'cause he's
The best thing in the play!
Snarly Scrooge! Rapturous Scrooge!
Bless him, Tiny Tim!
There's no doubt, when Carol's out,
This Ebby is our friend!

This review appeared in the Dallas Observer.

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