A ChristMESS Carol

Each Christmas season brings another version of ‘A Christmas Carol’. This year is no exception with versions of the famous novel scheduled (before tier 3 restrictions came into force) at both the Dominion Theatre and The Bridge Theatre. But, according to Charles Dickens (who is very much ‘alive’ via Zoom) those versions are incorrect and the self-titled ‘official, approved’ version is ‘A ChristMESS Carol’ performed by Open Bar Theatre in partnership with Fuller’s Inn.

Given the global pandemic and tier restrictions, theatres have had to become more creative with how to bring the joy of the Arts to audience members. This version is an abridged live-streamed production of the classic story of Scrooge who is visited by the Ghosts of Christmases Past, Present and Yet To Come and whom help him recognise the true spirit of Christmas.

Open Bar Theatre relishes involving the audience in the theatre experience and in this virtual production there’s plenty of opportunities for audience members to have a role, sing-a-long to Christmas carols or simply sit back and relax. Vicky Gaskin plays the hilarious, self-deprecating Dickens’ who narrates the story whilst interacting with fellow actors and audience members. Ben Galpin is fantastic as Scrooge. All the cast- Lilian Tsang, Laura Harling, Jessica Alade, Thomas Judd- play a variety of characters and do them equally well. It is directed by Nicky Diss and composed by David Knight. We especially loved the sketched backgrounds that helped transport us to the Victorian era.

Open Bar’s first digital production is supported by Fuller’s Inn. Their most recent collaboration, The Tempest, was performed in pub gardens during summer, and ONIN thoroughly enjoyed that production. Throughout this pandemic Fuller’s has continued to support Open Bar Theatre.

We at ONIN loved this humorous hour of entertainment that bought a smile to our faces. It’s a perfect treat for the whole family no matter what tier you’re in.  So put on your Christmas jumpers, bring the mulled wine and gather round for this delightful and heartwarming story that shares the magic of Christmas.

There are four more performances scheduled:  Friday 18th, Saturday 19th, Monday 21st and Tuesday 22nd December at 7:30pm on Zoom.

Tickets are on a three tiered ticketing system, where audiences pay what they can per household (£10, £20 or £30).

All profits will be split equally between the cast and creatives. Tickets are available at:



Written by Caitlin Neal