With one actor and over 35 distinct characters, this one-man tour de force is an intimate and spirited evening of theatre that everyone in the family will love! Utilizing only three unmatched chairs, Dickens’ famous story about selfishness and selflessness is stripped down to its bare essence, forgoing the usual opulence of the holidays and focusing on what is of utmost importance during the season. Dickens’ colorful characters are all present— Ebenezer Scrooge, Bob Cratchitt, Tiny Tim, Fezziwig, Belle, the Ghosts of Christmases Past, Present, and Future— springing to new life with a treasure trove of moral lessons for one and all. No scenery, no costumes— just one actor and a timeless story. God bless us, every one!
An animated, intimate evening of drama.
–City Life News
The following is a description of the characters in the story in order of appearance. Each must be defined not only in attitude, intensity and purpose, but physically. The nature of this production requires quick transition from one character to the next.
It is important to note that some of the characters described below do not have dialogue in the play but are visually seen for brief moments. For this reason they are physically described here.
The Narration is used to allow characters to easily transition from one character to another. When the Narrator is himself only, he is the neutral character of the actor stepping out of the play for brief comments on the action of the story. In the script, narration delivered in the physicality of a character is noted as such; example: Narr. as Bob.
One actor will play the following:
Narrator – The neutral personality of the actor chosen for the play.
Scrooge – A bit stiff, as if limited movement will waste less energy. He is tight both physically and money-minded, self-confined in his own world, unable to adjust, not wanting to adjust, stubborn, determined to be stubborn, self-pitying only in an angry, self-absorbed way, cautious and ready to pounce. He is afraid to feel and afraid of pain through a tender heart.
Bob Cratchit – A tall, thin man, fragile in self-confidence, strong in spirituality, bounding with youthful spirit. He is sincere and loving, walks lightly, and is timid. His power lies in his honest convictions and simple pleasures.
Fred – Is perpetually positive. He has a healthy happiness bursting with energy. He is romantic and handsome with pure mother’s innocence. He is idealistic and hopeful for a better world. He is never a victim.
Portly Gent – Never seen without his business companion. Whenever we see Portly Gent, he includes his partner in the conversation through eye contact and gesture. He is big-boned and blustery. He has a festive business demeanor, easily flustered, friendly but ineffective without the support of his partner.
Boy Caroler – Approximately 10 years old. He is diminutive, innocent, has a sweet sincerity and is a painter of beautiful imagery.
Marley – Old, bound up, pulling himself along (opposite of dragging). He is worn out but driven, impatient, lonely, wanting and needing for himself. He has an urgent frustration, but reluctantly resigned to a constant heavy burden. It is important to play him with a desire for a better existence and not as a creature “beyond all hope.”
Christmas Past – Described in the book as not old and not young. Christmas Past is neither male nor female. It is memories full either in joyful or painful experiences. This character never opens its eyes but uses grand gestures to physically embrace the positive memories with round open arms or push the negative memories physically away.
Boy Scrooge – A comparable character to Boy Caroler. He is 12 years old, lonely, empty, longing, breathless, and wanting.
Fran – A little girl about 8 years old. She is playful and giving. Overly excited, exuberant and unable to stand still. Her bright-eyed energy is infectious. She is in a hurry, and will not be denied.
Fezziwig – A big, round, bouncy, lovably boisterous man. He is joyous of life at every moment, nurturing and huggable, willing to laugh at himself.
Fezziwig Guests – Are only small moments in the Fezziwig scene. They are moments of dancing, or cheering in differing qualities giving the scene the feeling of a party. Each moment of a character needs to have a simple but concrete tempo and intensity and physicality to depict varied characters in the warehouse.
Belle – Petite and lovely. She is lovingly sure, gentle, forgiving and humble yet never angry, but sad in her loss. She is resigned but firm in her resolve to end her relationship with Scrooge.
Christmas Present – Plenty and bursting with positive happy energy. This "hope of new beginnings" has a huge, rich heart. He is bigger than life, proud and strong with little patience for Scrooge’s pessimistic attitudes.
Loud Children – One boisterous boy, a representative of a small group of child carolers singing a carol very loud and in haste. This single child sings with excitement, bouncing and bold, competing with his fellow carolers. They are completely in their own world.
Mrs. Cratchit – Fully a woman with a worn life experience. She is layered with responsibility and bravely embraces it. Physically quick, she is excitable, proud, loving and well-kempt in her poverty. She has a slight biting protectiveness.
Martha – Young in maturity about 18 years old. She is sweet but still a girl, fun loving and giggly. She is never physically still in her dialogue exchanges though she has a moderate level of young adulthood.
The Children – Are a boy and a girl too young to be different in quality of character. They rush in, circling their mother and looking up at her, excited beyond control. They are seen again “placing chairs for everyone” and do this in breakneck speed with the clumsiness of reaction before planning.
Belinda – The Cratchits’ second daughter. She is old enough for responsibility but young enough to give into the temptation of a sneaky taste of the applesauce.
Peter – A boy of about 14 trying to prove his capable hands. He fiercely mashes the potatoes as if racing to a finish line.
Tiny Tim – A young, six-year-old boy. A symbol of love and innocence in a small, vulnerable, godly package, smallest of them all with a big heart of pure love.
Old Man – Experienced, wise, and rich with swelling love for his family. He is tired but excepting, touching, and embracing. He knows the importance beyond the veil of this life.
Sturdy Man – A tough hard worker, sure and hearty with a bit of a soft sentimental side.
Male Guest – A playboy, young and sneaky in a playful way.
Pretty Sister – Giggly, coy, and naive. She is shy and cute, and though she knows it and uses it, it is charming. She cannot stop giggling.
Female Guest – A sweet friend of Fred’s wife. She is curious and competitive in game playing.
Old Male Guest – A pipe-smoking, logical, and comfortable fellow.
Ghost of Christmas Future – Never physically taken on by the actor but is a strong presence intently viewed by Scrooge. The image is of a heavily cloaked dark figure “concealing its head, face and form.”
Fat Man – An oily, large, greasy, unmoved and uncaring man. He laughs at his own jokes and is callous and lumbering. He talks to a small group of other unseen businessmen.
Old Joe – A squatty old codger, a brittle beggars vendee who thinks of himself as quite a player. Homely and somewhat toothless, he brazenly cowers in the darkness.
Beggar Woman – A cleaning lady and beggar woman full in age. A layered collector and protector of the clothes and wares she covets. She has a false unrepentant guilt.
Young Husband – Romantic and genuinely loving, warm, and protective. He has a sensual embracing oneness with his young wife. He is sincere about all his emotions.
Street Boy – A young lad of about 10 years old. He is quick and eager.
Setting: Christmas, early 1800s. Bare stage with three unmatched chairs.
Performance Royalties for AMATEUR and EDUCATIONAL Groups begin at $90.00 per performance for theaters under 150 seats, and rise depending on ticket prices and theater particulars. Please fill out an application for your personalized quote.
Performance Royalties for PROFESSIONAL Theaters will be quoted as a box office percentage, with a minimum guarantee based on ticket prices and theater particulars. Please fill out an application for your personalized quote.
An Authorized Materials/Rehearsal Package must be purchased from Stage Rights as a part of your licensing agreement (see Materials).
Billing responsibilities, pertinent copyright information, and playwrights' biographies are available in the show rider that comes with your license agreement.
“Baker brings the cast to life!” –Las Vegas Review Journal
“What Baker creates in One Christmas Carol is a most animated, intimate evening of drama.” –City Life News
“Baker weaves the story of Scrooge’s transformation with the skill of a master storyteller, punctuating it with pathos and humor.” –Las Vegas Review Journal
An Authorized Materials/Rehearsal Package must be purchased from Stage Rights as a part of your licensing agreement. Your materials will be sent to you two months prior to your opening date, unless other arrangements have been made in advance with your Stage Rights Licensing Representative.
The Authorized Materials/Rehearsal Package for One Christmas Carol consists of:
9 Production Scripts / $120.00 (shipping included)
Production Scripts for Plays are professionally printed and bound with a full-color cover.
You will have the option to purchase additional Production Scripts at a discounted rate when you complete your Licensing Agreement.
Official Logo Pack Now Included! To help you promote your show, Stage Rights now includes a logo pack with your license. The logo pack includes high resolution versions (both color and black and white) of our show logo. The logo is the portion of the artwork with the title of the show. The surrounding artwork is also available for an additional fee.
Stage Manager’s Script – Printed on standard 8.5” x 11” 3-hole-punched paper, with the same page numbers and text as the Printed Production Scripts, but with more space on the page for notes and cues.