Entertainment, News

A glimpse of normality and some Christmas magic

By Davey Pearson

A Christmas Carol
Capitol Theatre
12/12/2020 to 29/12/2020
My wife and I had the pleasure of attending Horsham’s Capitol Theatre last night for the first time in a long time to watch the festive favourite, A Christmas Carol.
Starring David Benson and Horsham’s very own Jack Lane, this adaptation of Charles Dickens classic novel spends its second year in Horsham following its huge success in 2019.
With new Covid measures in place my wife and I,  anxiously entered the theatre following the social distanced queue.
We were welcomed by a cheery member of staff who explained the ‘new normal’ rules to which we were grateful and immediately put at ease.
Masks on and 2 metres apart we ordered our refreshments, a packet of fruit pastels, a lemonade and 2 pints of Firebird Parody…..(saving me from having to go back to the bar mid performance, especially as there was no interval), oh by the way, rules on booze are that you can only drink in the auditorium whilst seated, no drama there then.
We were shown to our socially distanced seats which were actually planned out very well, I was a bit worried that with a smaller audience the atmosphere might have been lacking, but with everyone spread out the way they were, the theatre felt full.
The lights dimmed and the classic intro line ‘Marley was dead to begin with’ rang out.
The lights faded up to reveal a simple yet cleverly designed Victorian street scene and we were instantly transported to 19th Century London.
No stranger to Horsham’s Capitol Theatre, the brilliant David Benson emerged as the cruel and unforgiving Ebenezer Scrooge…(I felt like booing but alas it wasn’t that type of show)
He was followed by the amazing Jack Lane, firstly as Bob Cratchit, then Scrooge’s Nephew Fred, then the eager charity collector and so on it went with Lane eventually playing the parts of most of the other characters.
As the story unfolded I found myself wondering how they might perform certain classic scenes like the flying over rooftops to Scrooge’s past or the huge Christmas party at Fezziwigs, but with haunting sound effects, creative set design and clever lighting, and of course the outstanding performances from 2 seasoned actors I needn’t have worried, it was awesome.
And whilst this was a double act show featuring 2 Horsham favourites, there were in fact a couple of special appearances by 2 further performers, notably the 9ft ghost of Christmas Future and a wooden puppet playing the part of Tiny Tim, quick tip, tissues at the ready on the silhouette scene, very sad.
Overall my wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our first date night in a long long time, at our fave theatre watching one of our fave festive features, a definite 5 stars from us and  a huge well done to all involved.
So if you’re missing a bit of  Ye Olde Christmas spirit this year, get yourself booked into The Capitol Theatre, but make it quick, the show finishes on the 29th.
Merry Christmas and god bless us everyone x

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