Tudor Players | <? echo $page_title; ?> | Amateur drama society, Sheffield, Library, Theatre, stage plays, Comedy, acting, Ayckbourn, UK.


Review by Sue Cox - Noda

Library Theatre, Sheffield

Directed by John Moran

Tudor Players’ productions are always superbly performed and directed and “A Christmas Carol” is no exception. This adaptation of Charles Dickens’ well-known and loved work of “A Christmas Carol” follows the storyline of the miser Ebenezer Scrooge but with a mixture of wit and humour from all the characters. In addition to the role of Scrooge there are four actors each taking on multiple roles. Within the blink of an eye, they changed their characterisations, speech, body language and costumes to suit whichever character they were portraying. The five actors all gave first-class and very professional performances.

Phil Gascoyne’s performance of Ebenezer Scrooge was truly amazing, with copious amounts of dialogue and changes of character from the miser to that of a man displaying humour. He very rarely left the stage, making us laugh and in the end, you couldn’t help liking the old miser.

No matter which character Ross Bannister takes on he is superb, his characterisation of all the roles he portrayed (six in total) was spot-on, especially those of Bob Cratchit and Marley’s Ghost.  

The very experienced and talented actor Edwina Gascoyne also had to deal with six different characters. She gave great and different interpretations of all the characters, especially as the Ghost of Christmas Past. As a plus, we were also treated to some of Edwina’s beautiful singing. Charlie Gascoyne-Thompson is also a talented actor and had to deal with seven different characters, accents, and mannerisms, all of which were skilfully played, especially his Ghost of Christmas Present - I loved this interpretation.

Josh Cooper, with his very strong voice projection, was excellent as Scrooge’s nephew Frederick. Also, as Mr Fezziwig, a complete opposite to the nasty schoolmaster Mr. Grimes. Adding to his character list is the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come – this character had the audience in fits of laughter or an attack of fright all at the same time.

Adding to this wonderful production we had puppets. They were just like the Muppets and represented the young children of the Cratchit and Frederick families and a dog. The puppets’ actions were controlled with ease, and they had the audience in fits of laughter – especially the young Tiny Tim worked by Joe Gascoyne-Thompson.

Joe, Justin Harrison, Siobhan Hible, Rob Jex and Steve Mitchell (as the Musician) gave vital support in other acting roles and as puppeteers, singers and in placing the set around the stage.   

John Moran’s very professional direction of this skilful production was truely remarkable. A minimalist set, with well-choregraphed movement of screens and back projection of various Victoria scenes was well thought-out with sound, musical numbers, lighting effects and costumes, all enhanced this fine production.

From the opening of Act One until the final curtain, every member of the cast, production and technical teams worked very hard to ensure a first-class production and the applause received was well deserved. I don’t very often see a standing ovation, but there was one on the evening I visited.   A most excellent production, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

 Sue Cox


Drama Rep Reg 14.