Where To Watch Dickens' A Christmas Carol On Stage In London, 2023

Will Noble
By Will Noble Last edited 8 months ago

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Last Updated 15 November 2023

Where To Watch Dickens' A Christmas Carol On Stage In London, 2023

Psst! We've mapped a load of A Christmas Carol locations — from the book, films and plenty more.

Scrooge holds the hand of the Ghost of Christmas Past, who is dressed all in white
Antic Disposition has been putting on an immersive Christmas Carol show for the past decade. Image: Scott Rylander.

Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol is one of THE great stories — combining the magic of London, ghosts and Christmas. (Also, sometimes Kermit the Frog.) This yuletide, there's a festive flurry of adaptations on stage, running the gamut from traditional, to drunken, to one with Sherlock in it.

A Christmas Carol, Old Vic

Christopher Ecclestone as Scrooge in a stovepipe hat, holding a lantern
Christopher Ecclestone regenerates into Scrooge for this year's Old Vic production.

Since 2017, Waterloo's Old Vic theatre has staged Jack Thorne's (writer of Harry Potter and The Cursed Child) version of the Dickens Christmas parable, which comes loaded with all the trimmings — think stove-pipe hats, groaning ghouls, bewitching hand bells and mince pies dished out to the audience. It's back again in 2023, with Doctor Who alumnus Christopher Eccleston regenerating into the role of the miserable old pinchpenny who (spoiler alert) finally sees the light.

A Christmas Carol, Old Vic, 11 November 2023-6 January 2024

A Sherlock Carol, Marylebone Theatre

Scrooge and Sherlock Holmes together
Scrooge and Sherlock — talk about a dream team!

Set three Christmasses after the notorious Reichenbach Falls episode, this Sherlock-Scrooge mash-up sees the Victorian detective approached by one Tiny Tim, who wants to get to the bottom of the mysterious death of his reformed benefactor, Ebenezer Scrooge. A Sherlock Carol sounds like a Londonphile's Christmasses all come at once — plus the reviews from NYC, where it debuted, praise its savvy comedy stylings. One for people who like a good remix.

A Sherlock Carol, Marylebone Theatre, 24 November 2023-7 January 2024

A Pissedmas Carol, Leicester Square Theatre

Actors reading from a book : A Pissedmas Carol
One of these actors is off their head on Smoking Bishop (or Smirnoff). © Rah Petherbridge Photography

Bar, rum, glug! This show does what it says on the tin (of lager) — namely A Christmas Carol, but with one of the Sh!t-faced Showtime cast members getting increasingly merry (insert 'Christmas spirits' gag here). Whether or not they're guzzling down goblets of 'Smoking Bishop', to stay true to the original text, remains to be seen.

A Pissedmas Carol, Leicester Square Theatre, 28 November 2023-6 January 2024

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The Great Christmas Feast, The Lost Estate

Where better to watch A Christmas Carol than inside Dickens' own gaff… on Christmas Eve, 1843? No time machine — or Ghost of Christmas Past — needed. Immersive theatre-makers extraordinaire The Lost Estate have reimagined the great author's home in spectacular style at their huge west London venue. Here, Dickens himself (played by Alex Phelps, whose credits include Shakespeare's Globe) will introduce a critically-acclaimed production of the yuletide classic, which you'll enjoy alongside an exquisite festive feast.

Your journey begins on the starlit streets of Victorian London, before you step into this most inviting home to eat, drink and be merry. There are over 5,000 sqft of Darling & Edge-designed sets to admire as you settle in with a cocktail, courtesy of Dickens' drinks cabinet, ahead of the show. And what a show it is: here, you're transported right to the centre of the story, with live theatre taking place all around you. It's directed by Simon Pittman (Next To Normal Immersive, Royal Shakespeare Company, National Theatre) and features a live cinematic score — because no Christmas party is complete without a bit of music.

As for the food? Executive chef Ashley Clarke (Gordon Ramsay Group, SmokeStak, Temper Soho) has created a three-course love letter to Christmas in Victorian London. Dishes include a Gressingham duck leg braised in juniper and Michaelmas spices, and a black treacle and sweet ginger tart with Chantilly cream and mulled winter berry coulis. Beats one of those teeny tubs of ice cream any day.

The Great Christmas Feast runs on selected dates between 7 November 2023 and 14 January 2024. All previous editions have sold out — get your tickets now to avoid disappointment!

A Christmas Carol, Alexandra Palace

Promo image showing Scrooge and Jacob Marley
Keith Allen should make a redoubtable Scrooge, we reckon.

One of the big ticket shows of the season, Ally Pally's A Christmas Carol stars Keith Allen as Scrooge (and we can imagine he'd make a good one). The adaptation — which enjoyed rave reviews when it debuted in 2021 — is penned by Mark Gatiss, so you can expect proper chills down the spine, in a world of supernatural Victoriana — and what is already an eerily beautiful theatre.

A Christmas Carol, Alexandra Palace, 24 November 2023-7 January 2024

The Muppet Christmas Carol, Prince Charles Cinema

Promo shot for The Muppets Christmas Carol
Altogether now: "It's in the singing of the street corner choir..."

OK, so this isn't a live stage production. And there are many other screenings of The Muppets' festive caper in London. But the The Prince Charles Cinema's singalongs are one of the great joys in life — and whether you've seen this film a million times, or are somehow, SOMEHOW a first-timer, you're going to have a hoot. Altogether now: "It's in the singing of the street corner choir..."

The Muppet Christmas Carol, Prince Charles Cinema, 1-24 December 2023

A Christmas Carol, Hoxton Hall and New Wimbledon Theatre

A grim looking Jacob Marley with a bandage wrapped around his head
Two actors play some 30 characters in this retelling with a twist. Image: Dickens Theatre Company

The Dickens Theatre Company returns for a couple of short runs at both Hoxton Hall, and New Wimbledon Thetare, with its unique spin on A Christmas Carol. This involves two of Dickens's theatrical companions forced to play 30-odd characters between then, when the rest of their troupe gets stuck on a train. Bloody strikes.

A Christmas Carol, Hoxton Hall 2-3 December 2023, Studio at New Wimbledon Theatre, 4-9 December 2023

A Christmas Carol, Greenwich Theatre

"Tonight Matthew I'm going to be... Charles Dickens". Image: David Bartholemew

And if you think two's a small cast (see above), then try one. Yet again this Christmas, John O'Connor steps into the shoes of Charles Dickens, as he rattles off a spirited public reading at Greenwich Theatre (there are only three shows, so be quick getting tickets). It's a great way to see just how perfect the story is, even without any theatrical bells and whistles.

A Christmas Carol, Greenwich Theatre, 12 and 18 December 2023

A Christmas Carol: Live, Charles Dickens Museum

A man in Victorian garb performing to the camera
James Swanton returns to the Charles Dickens Museum this Christmas for live storytelling.

Wish you could've seen Charles Dickens perform A Christmas Carol at one of his famous live performances (where he was hopped up on champagne and oysters)? Head to the Charles Dickens Museum, where James Swanton does a bally good impression of the great author as he rollicks through the festive novella.

That's not the only Dickens storytelling going on at the museum this Christmas: Swanton is also doing a handful of performances of festive tales The Chimes, and The Haunted Man. On Christmas Eve itself, a festively-decorated Charles Dickens Museum opens up for yuletide shenanigans, with screenings of various film adaptations of A Christmas Carol, including a certain one featuring puppets and Michael Caine...

A Christmas Carol: Live, Charles Dickens Museum, 13-23 December 2023

Deck The Halls With Streetwise Opera, All Hallows by the Tower

Simon Callow reading from a lectern
Simon Callow reads his favourite extracts from A Christmas Carol

An evening of yuletide merriment, Deck The Halls features festive singalongs and readings from the likes of Paterson Joseph, the Epiphoni Consort chamber choir, and the Fulham Brass Band. A highlight is an appearance from the dulcet-voiced Simon Callow, who takes to the lectern to read his favourite excerpts from A Christmas Carol. It's sure to be a memorable experience, and it's all in aid of homelessness charity Streetwise Opera, so your sixpences are going to a good cause.

Deck The Halls With Streetwise Opera, All Hallows by the Tower, 15 December 2023

A Christmas Carol, Middle Temple Hall

The ghost of Christmas Present holds a chicken wing
Middle Temple Hall is transformed into a Dickensian wonderland. Image: Scott Rylander

For the past decade, Antic Disposition has laid on an enchanting A Christmas Carol rendition, which whisks you through the cobbled inns of court that Dickens himself would have known, staging the ghostly tale in the grand Middle Temple Hall, replete with boughs of holly, mulled wine and an original score inspired by Victorian carols. Sounds as magical as a white Christmas.

A Christmas Carol, Middle Temple Hall, 21-30 December 2023