A bit of humbug?

Posted on 26 Oct 2008 at 2:18pm
By Arnold Wayne Jones Staff Writer

DTC revives ‘Carol’ — but one theatergoer is holding off seeing it


M. Denise Lee returns to the DTC as Mrs. Fezziwig, pictured center, and as the Ghost of Christmas Present.

I can whole-heartedly recommend the Dallas Theater Center’s current production of "A Christmas Carol," which opened earlier this week. Cockle-warming, seasonally greeting, humbug-crushing Dickens. Of course you should see it.

But not me. Not for a while yet.

So how can I commend a production I haven’t seen yet? Well, when it’s this play, at this theater, it’s not hard to do. This is the third year that the production has starred Robert Langdon Lloyd as Scrooge and M. Denise Lee as the Ghost of Christmas Present, and more than that since Joel Ferrell stepped in to direct and choreograph a cast that also includes Chamblee Ferguson, Matthew Gray, Jessica D. Turner and Lee Trull in key roles.

Last year’s version — for some ethereal reason you can only attribute to the magic of live theater — was one of the best. So I’m playing the averages that this year will be comparable. In fact, I’m counting on it.

So why not just see the damn thing?

For seven years, ever since I started reviewing theater for Dallas Voice, I’ve had to see "A Christmas Carol" early — this year, opening night was before Thanksgiving! How can it feel like Christmas when I haven’t even suffered from turkey-and-pie poisoning yet?

I fully intend to see this "Christmas Carol" before the end of the run (it’ll be back next year for probably its final incarnation at the Kalita Humphreys, then will move with the rest of the DTC schedule to the new Wyly Theatre in the Arts District). But for a change, I’m waiting until December (perhaps even the last performance) before committing myself to experiencing Ebenezer’s epiphany.

Is that a humbug on my part? Bah! I’m just not in the mood to rest ye merry gentlemen and think of good King Wenceslas. Yet. But I’ll get there by Christmas Eve. Just like Scrooge.

Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd. Through Dec. 28. $16–$60. 214-522-8499. Dallastheatercenter.org.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition November 28, 2008.

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