Women take centre stage in this year’s Theatre New Brunswick production of A Christmas Carol.
This season marks Theatre New Brunswick’s seventh production of the Dickens holiday classic, A Christmas Carol. Beginning in 1980 with an adaptation by Barbara Field that starred celebrated Canadian actor Barry Morse as Scrooge, each new production that followed has been a unique, standalone interpretation of this timeless tale. While the story has always remained the same – complete with Scrooge, the three spirits and Marley’s “chain forged in life” – the adaptation, the direction, the design and the cast ensure no two productions are ever the same. And this season is no different.
For our 2017 holiday production, we’re excited to continue our exploration of this important chapter in the holiday canon. In doing so, we’re honoured to welcome guest director Ann-Marie Kerr of Halifax.
Ann-Marie is an award-winning theatre director whose work has appeared on an impressive list of stages across the country and around the world including Toronto’s Soul Pepper Theatre Company, the National Theatre School in Montreal and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
We’re equally excited to announce Canadian actor and Stratford Festival veteran Nora McLellan will make her TNB debut, playing the role of Ebenezer Scrooge. This marks our first time welcoming a female actor to play the part of Dickens’ beloved holiday curmudgeon.
“When Ann-Marie [Kerr] contacted me I was absolutely delighted,” said McLellan. “It had not occurred to me that a theatre company would ask a woman to play the part.”
As Scrooge, Nora joins an impressive lineage of actors to play the role on the TNB stage including Barry Morse, Douglas Campbell, Al Kozlik and Shawn Wright.
“Scrooge is such a universal character and of course we traditionally think of him as male,” said McLellan. “I have some friends who have been playing this role for 20 or 30 years now. I can’t wait to tell them, ‘hey, there’s a new girl in town’.”
This production will also be the world premiere of a new adaptation by TNB Artistic Director Thomas Morgan Jones.
“Together with the designers, I’ve been dreaming up the most playful and dynamic staging of the show that I can,” said Kerr. “We are going with a neo-Victorian steampunk sensibility and so the show will not look like other productions you’ve seen but it will be loyal to its characters and the heart of the play.
“With this cast of brilliant actors and Nora in the middle of it all, I hope to be engage the imaginations of the audience and offer a real holiday treat,” she said.
A Christmas Carol
Written by Charles Dickens
Adapted by Thomas Morgan Jones
Directed by Ann-Marie Kerr
Ensemble (in alphabetical order)
Joanna Yu – Set Designer
Sherry Kinnear – Costume Designer
Leigh Ann Vardy – Lighting Designer
Aaron Collier – Composer & Sound Designer
Tammy Faulkner – Stage Manager
Tessa Pekeles – Assistant Stage Manager