• Sweden edition
 
ENGLISH LANGUAGE THEATRE
Dickens' Christmas Carol hits Stockholm theatre

Dickens' Christmas Carol hits Stockholm theatre

Published: 04 Dec 2012 14:16 GMT+01:00
Updated: 04 Dec 2012 14:16 GMT+01:00

With one of the world’s favourite Christmas tales set to hit the stage in Stockholm this week, The Local talks to the cast and crew to find out more about why Swedes love Dickens, the importance of English, and Ebenezer Scrooge.

The story of Ebenezer Scrooge, described by Charles Dickens as "a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner", opens Thursday at Stockholm's Maxim Theatre and director Pernilla Isedal couldn't be more excited.

“When it comes to A Christmas Carol I know it inside out and backwards,” she tells The Local.

Isedal has been at the helm of the play for the past four Christmases in Stockholm and her involvement stretches back to 1988, when she took part as a 19-year-old actor at the city's Regina Theatre.

But since becoming the director in 2009, she’s adapted the story to be “even more English” and re-adapted the play from the previous version by the English Theatre Company.

“They had simplified the language. I think they were worried the Swedish audience wouldn't grasp everything in the story. But I've realized that the audience gets so much," she says.

“I think that now it’s closer to Dickens than ever."

Adding to the mostly British cast, Isedal has also employed the talents of ten Swedish children – all of whom can sing, dance and act – and most importantly – do it while speaking English like a native.

With a few international kids among the Swedes, Isedal admits that there has been a little tweaking:

“But it worked. Sometimes you can hear a twang, but we're really pleased”.

Dickens, who was born exactly 200 years ago, wrote the classic novel in 1843 and published it for Christmas.

Englishman and newly-settled Gothenburg resident James Hogg is playing the show's narrator, and explains that the show also remains a favourite due to its relevance.

“The show is still tremendously popular," he says.

"In a time like now when people are a bit shorter of money than they have been and there's a slight hatred towards bankers, people can really relate to it.”

Meanwhile, Londoner Ted Merwood is thrilled to be taking on what he considers to be one of the most iconic characters in English history – Mr. Bah Humbug himself – Ebenezer Scrooge.

“You can keep your King Lear and Hamlets,” he tells The Local.

“I don’t know if there’s another part that goes from ‘orrible old bastard to everybody's friend like Scrooge does. It’s a parable for any time, it’s iconic, it’s still popular 150 years on but I think people will still be reading it and watching it in another 150 years.”

Merwood, who is playing Scrooge for the first time, explains that the show has now become a fixture on the Stockholm Christmas scene.

"The audiences have built up, and are getting better and better. Word is getting around that it’s really rather good.”

“We’re not rehashing a show to make a bit of money, there is great affection here, and I think it really shows.”

A Christmas Carol runs from December 6th to 23rd at the Maxim Theatre. Tickets available via the official site below.

Oliver Gee

Follow Oliver on Twitter here

Related links:

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

19:22 December 8, 2012 by True & Evil
Black Metal is better than Christmas Carols, mwahahahahah...
Today's headlines
Florida 'mystery knight' dies in Sweden
Michael Boatwright (R) and Medieval knight re-enactors.

Florida 'mystery knight' dies in Sweden

The "motel mystery" American who baffled US authorities by only speaking Swedish when he woke up from a coma last year has passed away, Swedish media reported on Wednesday. READ () »

Swedes open coffin of 850-year-old king
Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

Swedes open coffin of 850-year-old king

UPDATED: Scientists pried open the 850-year-old casket of King Erik the Holy on Wednesday, hoping to find out more about the king, his crown, and his eating habits. READ () »

TeliaSonera announces first-quarter profit drop
TeliaSonera CEO Johan Dennelind. File photo: TT

TeliaSonera announces first-quarter profit drop

Stockholm-listed telecom operator TeliaSonera on Wednesday said profits had fallen in the first quarter, but hoped offering customers more data solutions in the future would turn things around. READ () »

'Imperfect EU better than revolting nationalism'
Fredrik Reinfeldt. File photo: TT

'Imperfect EU better than revolting nationalism'

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt on Wednesday urged young voters to head to the European parliamentary polls on May 25th "to cure the European disease of nationalism". READ () »

Ericsson quarterly profit defies sluggish sales
Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg at the first quarter press conference. Photo: TT

Ericsson quarterly profit defies sluggish sales

Swedish telecom giant Ericsson on Wednesday announced a drop in sales but posted a sharp rise in first-quarter profit, which nonetheless fell shy of analyst predictions. READ () »

Fatal Norrköping brawl
Four brothers held as cops fear brawl reprisals
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Four brothers held as cops fear brawl reprisals

Swedish police fear that several people involved in a brawl in eastern Sweden on Monday night may be seeking revenge after two brothers were shot dead. READ () »

Sponsored Article
Beautiful pearls of southeast Sweden
The town of Västervik.

Beautiful pearls of southeast Sweden

Ask a Swede, and they are likely to say that their favourite holiday spot is in the southeast of Sweden. Eastern Småland and Öland offer a smörgåsbord of all the things dearest to the Swedes - from the beloved children's book author Astrid Lindgren to deep forests, long sandy beaches, perfect spots for that all-important 'fika', and a surprising amount of space, peace and quiet. READ () »

Weekend weather to bring summer warmth
Swedes enjoy hot dogs and cherry blossoms in Stockholm's Kungsträdgården. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Weekend weather to bring summer warmth

The sun is set to stick around and temperatures could climb into the twenties over the weekend, Swedish meteorologists said on Wednesday READ () »

'Day-care rapist' admits molesting eight kids

'Day-care rapist' admits molesting eight kids

A 21-year-old man confessed on Wednesday to sex crimes against eight children at a day care where he was working as an intern. READ () »

Swedish cops nab man for having big muscles
An unrelated bodybuilder. File photo: Ann Törnkvist

Swedish cops nab man for having big muscles

Police in Sweden's south who hauled a muscular man in for steroid testing have had their knuckles rapped, after it was ruled that big biceps cannot be grounds for narcotics suspicions. READ () »

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
TT
Gallery
Inside the 850-year-old king's coffin
Features
Sponsored: South-eastern Sweden offers Öland beaches and more
Gallery
Swedish underwear shop puts staff in front of the camera
Gallery
IN PICTURES: The Local's Property of the Week - Täby
Sponsored: India+Sweden Week - India Unlimited
Features
Sponsored: India+Sweden Week - A film, food, and finance feast
National
University applications rocket to record high
finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 18-20
TT
Society
Kids in Victorian garb mark Swedish Easter
Shutterstock
National
Swedish MP ordered chemtrail probe
Society
Swedish supermarket Ica pulls contested Easter commercial off air
Kungahuset
Society
Swedish royals set baptism date for princess
finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 16
Advertisement:
Politics
Who's the prime minister's heir?
Alfie Atkins
Society
Are children's books the key to families integrating in Sweden?
National
'Sweden Dem protests cater to party's martyr image'
National
'Swedish research grants were fantastic, but now it's like Australia'
Society
Only in Sweden: The ten problems you'd never encounter elsewhere
National
Swedes stopped to take my picture, but didn't look me in the eyes
Business & Money
A swipe of the hand replaced cash and cards in Lund
YouTube
Features
Video: Oliver Gee finds out how to embrace The Swedish Hug
TT
National
Abba duo hints at reunion
Private
National
Flash mobs hug it out across Sweden
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 11-13
Stockholm School of Economics
Sponsored Article
Why a bachelor's degree is no longer enough
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Blog Update: The Diplomatic Dispatch

28 October 15:16

The Green Growth Group Summit »

"Today on the 28 October in Brussels, a large group of key EU Ministers and business people, including UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey, and Swedish Environment Minister Lena Ek, will meet to discuss green growth. They all have a stake in resolving a challenge which, although it is crucial..." READ »

719
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com