Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol


Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol

November 2 - December 16, 2018
Gil Cates Theater

World Premiere Adaptation
Adapted by Jefferson Mays, Susan Lyons & Michael Arden
Performed by Jefferson Mays
Directed by Michael Arden

Tony Award winner Jefferson Mays (I Am My Own Wife, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder) breathes new life into the greatest ghost story ever told. While the heart of A Christmas Carol is evergreen, Mays brings fresh perspective to Scrooge, Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and the rest, playing every role in this whirlwind one-man show. Tony Award-nominated director Michael Arden (Once On This Island, Deaf West’s production of Spring Awakening) creates a wildly theatrical and spectacular experience.

"Tony winner Jefferson Mays delivers an epic one-man show, embodying 50 distinct characters in this stunning adaptation directed by Michael Arden of the seasonal classic."
—Jordan Riefe, Hollywood Reporter  READ FULL REVIEW

"Jefferson Mays, genius, has performed a Christmas miracle. He not only got me to the Geffen to see A Christmas Carol, something I've vowed never to do again. But he got me to rave about his one-man version of the show."
—Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times  READ FULL REVIEW

"Catch it now so you can tell your New York friends you saw it here first."

PARENTS: Due to loud sounds and scariness of the ghost Marley, this production is NOT recommended for children under 12. Children under 6 will not be admitted.

In The News

Ovation Recommended by LA Stage Alliance

Review: Critics' Choice! Tony-winner Jefferson Mays, a virtuoso working solo, brings A Christmas Carol back from the dead

Review: "You've seen it before, but not like this. Tony winner Jefferson Mays delivers an epic one-man show, in this stunning adaptation of the seasonal classic!"

Review: "This is a Christmas Carol you definitely don’t want to miss. While, yes, it is a holiday show—it’s also one of the best pieces of theatre you’re likely to see this year."

Review: "If Dickens’ classic is indeed a 'Ghost Story of Christmas,' then Tony winner Jefferson Mays’ dark one-man retelling is certainly done in the right spirit."

Review: The Geffen offers the unforgettable gift of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol

Review: One-Man Christmas Carol Taps Into the Story's Inner Terror

Review: ★★★★ "Jefferson Mays has given L.A. an ideal Christmas gift: a one-man, thrilling performance of Dickens’s A Christmas Carol!"

Review: "One of the Christmas season’s most spectacular stage offerings... and quite possibly the most moving and inspiring A Christmas Carol I’ve seen!"

Review: Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol strikes fear into heart, then defrosts it with holiday warmth

Review: Geffen's incredible Christmas Carol is not to be missed!

Review: Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol—Haunting Hit at the Geffen

Review: A Ghostly Carol to Remember

Feature: Why Just Play Scrooge When You Can Play Everyone?

Feature: Jefferson Mays Is Doing A Christmas Carol, By Himself

Interview: A Bathtub Phone Call With Jefferson Mays, Star of a Solo Christmas Carol

Interview: Jefferson Mays on Always Looking for the Next Terror, Wonder & Joy of His Profession

Geffen Playhouse Blog: A Caroling We Go — Reaching for one of literature’s greatest tales, Jefferson Mays and Susan Lyons set out to transform us all




A Christmas Carol (2018)


Meet The Artists

JEFFERSON MAYS (Performer / Adaptor)
Jefferson Mays has appeared at Geffen Playhouse in I Am My Own Wife and Yes, Prime Minister! Broadway credits are Oslo, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, The Best Man, I Am My Own Wife, Pygmalion, Journey’s End and Of Thee I Sing. Off-Broadway, he has performed in Measure for Measure, Lydie Breeze, Quills and many more. Regional credits include My Fair Lady, Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead, The Importance of Being Earnest, The Cherry Orchard, Tartuffe, Twelfth Night, Macbeth, Hamlet, The Winter’s Tale and Peter Pan. Film and television credits include the upcoming I Am the Night and the Coen brothers’ The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, Inherent Vice, Rebel in the Rye, I am Michael, The Notorious Bettie Page, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, The Americans, Mildred Pierce, Law & Order: SVU, Nurse Jackie, The Closer and Dolley Madison. Awards include Tony, Lucille Lortel, Drama Desks, Obies, Outer Critic’s Circle, Helen Hayes, Elliot Norton, Theatre World, Drama League, Jefferson, Drama-logue and Helpmann. Mays received his B.A. from Yale College and an M.F.A. from University of California, San Diego. He is married to Susan Lyons.

After graduating from Australia’s National Institute of Dramatic Art, Susan worked extensively in theater, film, television and radio, playing a wide range of leading roles with all the major companies. She was awarded the Marten Bequest in 1993. Married to Jefferson Mays, she directed him in the national and international tours of I Am My Own Wife.

MICHAEL ARDEN (Director / Adaptor)
Michael Arden began his theater career at age ten playing Tiny Tim in the Midland Community Theatre’s production of A Christmas Carol in Midland, Texas. He is humbled to be working with the singular Jefferson Mays and all the incredible artists and technicians—including his longtime friend and collaborator Dane Laffrey—on this reimagining of Charles Dickens’ masterpiece. Past directing credits include Deaf West Theatre’s Spring Awakening (Tony nomination), Once on This Island (Tony nomination and the 2018 winner of Best Revival of a Musical), The Pride, Merrily We Roll Along, My Fair Lady and Annie at the Hollywood Bowl. He hopes Scrooge’s visitations might inspire us all to lead more honest, empathetic and benevolent lives. God bless us, every one! @michaelarden

Charles Dickens, one of the most popular and prolific writers of the nineteenth century, was born in 1812, in Portsea, England. In 1824, his father was arrested for debt and while he was imprisoned, Dickens, then only 12, was forced to work at a blacking factory. After his father was released from prison, Dickens attended school in London. In 1827, he was taken out of school and worked in a law office and later as a freelance reporter. In 1833, he began publishing The Pickwick Papers in monthly installments. Over the next six years, Dickens published four novels in serial form including Oliver Twist (1837-1839) and Nicholas Nickleby (1838-1839). In 1842, he went on a lecture tour of the United States and Canada, where he urged the abolition of slavery. He wrote A Christmas Carol, the first of his popular Christmas books, in 1844. In 1853, Dickens gave the first of many public readings from his work. During this period, Dickens wrote his most successful novels, including David Copperfield (1849-1850), Bleak House (1852-1853), Hard Times (1854), A Tale of Two Cities (1859) and Great Expectations (1860-1861). After several tours of the British Isles and America to give public readings, Dickens suffered a mild stroke. He died in London in 1870, leaving his final novel The Mystery of Edwin Drood unfinished.

Now At The Geffen

Upcoming Shows & Events

. August 2019
September 2019
October 2019

Performance Info

This production contains theatrical haze and loud noises.

90 minutes, no intermission.