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A Christmas Carol

By Jarrod 21 Oct 2014

Maclean Hopper from the RNZB in a promo image for A Christmas Carol, credit Ross BrownAround this time of year you start to hear a now familiar complaint: something about Christmas starting earlier and earlier (and earlier). And it’s true - we’re not even out of October and already there are certain shopping institutions in the region that have Christmas decorations out…

This year, however, there’s good reason to break out the baubles and tinsel early: the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s final production for 2014 is A Christmas Carol, based on Charles Dickens’ classic story, and it kicks off in Wellington on 30 October.

Ghost of Christmas Future costumeOriginally created for the UK’s Northern Ballet, this version of the tale of Ebenezer Scrooge features an original score by Carl Davis, interwoven with traditional Christmas songs, and - somewhat unusually - calls upon the dancers to break out their singing voices. Northern Ballet’s ballet master, Daniel de Andrade, has been working with the RNZB to stage the local production, which will make use of the original sets and costumes. This includes more than 600 different costume elements, and some truly impressive staging.

The Ghost of Christmas Past  - credit Bill CooperIt’s perhaps appropriate that the show will start in time for Halloween, given the tale’s ghostly nature; skeletons and creatures of the night abound, including a particularly fearsome Ghost of Christmas Future (who has already done a tour of a few Wellington locations). Rest assured, though, that despite the odd scare A Christmas Carol will be suitable for the whole family - even those who possibly haven’t seen much ballet before, with the familiar story and familiar songs providing a perfect introduction.

It may seem a little early for Christmas to be here, but Wellington is lucky enough to get A Christmas Carol first, before the company take the show on the road around New Zealand. Maybe think of it as the ideal early gift for the dance enthusiast in your life?

A Christmas Carol, St James Theatre, 30 October - 8 November 2014

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