Review Round Up: A Christmas Carol, Old Vic Theatre

Jack Thorne’s version of the classic festive story returns to the Old Vic Theatre with Stephen Tompkinson as Scrooge. Here’s what critics have made of it… 

A christmas carol

The Stage: **** “Trust Thorne to make a success of it, adding ambiguity to the ending and furnishing the show with some properly tearjerking moments. Let’s hope it returns for many more Christmas futures.”

Culture Whisper: ***** “From the moment you enter the Old Vic for A Christmas Carol there’s enough festivity to blast away all the Bah Humbugs.”

The Times: *** “This nippy, largely faithful adaptation is so sumptuously staged that I feel a bit Scrooge-like for liking it rather than loving it.”

Evening Standard: **** “Even if it could do with more notes of darkness, this is ultimately a moving and atmospheric Christmas Carol, especially when Tiny Tim appears.”

The Telegraph: **** “If Thorne over-plays the psychological at the expense of the phantasmagorical, slightly short-changing us with three pram-pushing, female, wisely advisory spirits – the rejuvenated look that finally sweeps over Scrooge is its own Christmas miracle.”

Time Out: ***** “Okay, this won’t be to everyone’s taste, and Warchus could have toned down the panto and upped the chilly spookiness without doing any real damage. But if the message of ‘A Christmas Carol’ is ‘God bless us every one’ (movingly delivered the night I saw it by Leo Lake as Tiny Tim), then this is theatre in which inclusivity is centre-stage, and the perils of denying it are all around you.”

Broadway World: **** “A Christmas Carol again is as warm and uplifting as a hug from St Nicholas himself.”

WhatsOnStage: ***** “Tompkinson is skilled, too, at emphasising the deeper psychological aspects of the character, as does Thorne’s script – we are reminded, in this production, that this is as much the story of an older man looking back over his life, and trying to make peace with his mistakes, as it is that of an unreconstituted miser forced to confront the error of his ways.”

The Upcoming: ***** “Thorne’s piece offers an enormously buoyant message of benevolence and goodwill, a much-needed shot of positive spirit and enlightenment in a turbulent world. Thoroughly entertaining, fun, ebullient, emotionally cathartic and uplifting, A Christmas Carol is a spectacular, joyful show.”

A Christmas Carol continues to play at the Old Vic Theatre until the 19th January. To book tickets visit:


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