You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Mark Gatiss’s stage adaptation of A Christmas Carol postponed to 2021

The Guardian logo The Guardian 06/08/2020 Chris Wiegand

Video: Movies to watch in August (PA Media)


Mark Gatiss’s adaptation of A Christmas Carol has been delayed for a year by the uncertainty about the reopening of UK theatres. The production, in which Gatiss will play the ghost of Ebenezer Scrooge’s business partner, Jacob Marley, will open at Nottingham Playhouse in October 2021 and at Alexandra Palace in London the following month.

Gatiss appeared beneath a hood as “the ghost of Christmas past, present and future” to make the announcement in a video message. In the past, he said, he was commissioned to adapt the Charles Dickens classic. The production is not possible during the pandemic, but, “looking into Christmas future, we are going to do it next year. Don’t worry, we’ll be back as shiny as a mince pie.”

Gatiss said he had written the first draft of the script and begun discussions about how to bring his version of the novella to the stage. He has called A Christmas Carol, which was first published in 1843, “absolutely my favourite story since I was, well, tiny. It’s an astonishingly powerful tale of life, love, loss and redemption and remains supremely relevant. But at its heart it is a ghost story and that will be at the core of my new version.”

The production will be directed by Adam Penford, Nottingham Playhouse’s artistic director. He said: “It’s with a heavy heart that we’re postponing the production. The adaptation that Mark has delivered during lockdown exceeded our already high expectations – it makes you see the well-known tale through fresh eyes.”

Several other major theatre productions for winter have already been postponed, including dozens of pantomimes, leaving venues in peril as the industry crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic continues to deepen.

This week it was announced that pantos at the King’s theatre in Edinburgh, His Majesty’s theatre in Aberdeen, the Grand Opera House in Belfast, the Mayflower in Southampton, the New Wolsey in Ipswich and Birmingham Hippodrome have all been pushed back to 2021.

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon