Ebenezer celebrates ten years of Humbug!

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Jeremy Webb’s A Christmas Carol at The’YARC Dec. 13

By Belle Hatfield
The VANGUARD
www.thevanguard.ca
 
In 1843 Charles Dickens wove the character of Ebenezer Scrooge into a short novel. The Christmas Carol has never since been out of print and in its many forms, the story of Scrooge’s redemption has become one of the most beloved in English literature.

 

On Friday, Dec. 13, Jeremy Webb's one-man production of Dickens' A Christmas Carol is coming to Th’YARC. Webb’s production has now been entertaining families for the holiday season for a decade. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. Call the box office at 742-8150. Tickets $18: Th’YARC members $16.

Webb says at its heart Dickens’ story is about transformation, hope and redemption and that is in large part responsible for its enduring popularity.

“Watching Scrooge be emotionally stirred for the first time in decades right in front of your eyes ….,. we have all felt like Scrooge at some point, so the story reminds us that there’s hope and that we can all be saved from ourselves or from the weight of the world,” Webb told the Vanguard.

Webb first created the show in 2003.  It’s never stopped evolving.

“Each year we change things up and add new elements,” he says. In 2011, Webb performed the show with Symphony Nova Scotia with an original score by Scott MacMillan.

The production has been reviewed many times in the past 10 years.

A Christmas Carol takes place that famous night when the Dickens’ inspired Ebenezer Scrooge is forced to face his miserly ways. Dickens' cast of characters – Bob Cratchit, Marley, and Tiny Tim – make this a holiday classic for the whole family.

The show is a traditional telling of the holiday classic, with puppets portraying the ghosts and Webb playing 25 characters.

“The show changes every year. Last year projection elements were added in. Now there’s original music. I am forever tinkering with the script. From the very first year to now,” he said. “At its most basic I could sit in a chair and tell you the story and you would be entertained. But I wanted to make it very three-dimensional. I want adults to be as entranced as the kids.”

Looking back 170 years to the birth of Ebenezer and The Christmas Carol, Webb hopes that Dickens would approve.

“He used to do performances of it just like this,” Webb said of the 127 readings that Dickens performed in his lifetime.

“I would hope that he’d be thrilled that it is still going and that idiots like me were jumping on the stage for 90 minutes.

“And that’s the beauty of live theatre. You get to go into a dark room, have a communal experience not unlike a church. You get to sit with like-minded people and be taken away from your lives for an hour or two.”

Webb emigrated from Great Britain in 1998 and lives in Nova Scotia where he works as an actor, director and host.

Organizations: Vanguard

Geographic location: Great Britain, Nova Scotia

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