What the Dickens 

• Harbour Theatre’s 2022 version of A Christmas Carol features Kardinya’s Michael Dornan (right) as Charles Dickens.

KARDINYA’S Michael Dornan will star as Charles Dickens in a new quirky take on the festive classic A Christmas Carol. 

Adapted by playwright David Edgar, the 2022 version has Dickens narrating and appearing as himself in this timeless yarn about Scrooge, a mean misanthrope visited by three ghosts on Christmas Eve. 

“It’s a well-loved tale with a lot of Christmas spirit,” says co-director Ann Speicher. 

“This new version has Dickens walking in and out of scenes with his friend and biographer John Forster.” 

With a large cast including several children, it proved to be a challenging production. 

“It can be quite a mission to get them all together,” Speicher says. 

“The story is scenic and moves quickly from scene to scene, so I need a lot of people at rehearsals at one time. 

“The Dickensian era is very different from modern day so the attitudes, speech and movement have to be appropriate to the era, which has taken some teaching.” 

With a wealth of stage experience, Speicher has appeared in numerous shows at Harbour, Garrick, Stirling, Melville and Old Mill Theatres and has directed Ghost Train, Managing Carmen, Don’t Dress For Dinner and Pardon Me, Prime Minister at Harbour Theatre. 

Most recently, Speicher has performed in Full Circle, Into The Woods and Freaky Friday at Stirling Theatre and The Kitchen Sink at Harbour Theatre. 

“A Christmas Carol appealed because I really enjoy the story and felt it would be a lovely show to present, especially for the time of year,” she says. 

“We’re aiming for the traditional costumes that go along with the tale to remain faithful to Dickens’ original work.” 

Co-director SJ Christiner plays Bob Cratchit, Scrooge’s faithful clerk, and Dornan, a former John Curtin College of the Arts student and South Freo resident, is Dickens. 

The new production is showing at the Harbour Theatre in Mosman Park. 

Harbour Theatre has a strong historical connection with Fremantle and was based in the Evan Davies Building on South Terrace for 31 years. 

A Christmas Carol is at the Harbour Theatre, 6 Lochee Street Mosman Park, at 7.30pm December 2, 3, 7, 9 and 10 with 2pm December 4 and 11. Tix at TAZTix.com.au or call 9255 3336. 

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