Bristol, TN

Bristol's Christmas Extravaganza: "A Christmas Carol" and "The Nutcracker"

John M. Dabbs

Bristol, Tenn. — This holiday season, Bristol comes alive with two classic performances, Theatre Bristol's "A Christmas Carol" and the Bristol Ballet's "The Nutcracker," promising to enthrall audiences with their unique adaptations.

Theatre Bristol's "A Christmas Carol"

Transporting audiences to mid-1840s London, Theatre Bristol's adaptation of Charles Dickens's "A Christmas Carol" was directed by Glenn Patterson and adapted by David Edgar for the Royal Shakespeare Company in 2017. This production stands out by including Charles Dickens and his friend John Forster as characters, providing insightful commentary and context to the story. This adaptation is lauded for its faithfulness to Dickens' original work while offering a fresh perspective. The cast of 33 plays over 80 roles, bringing to life beloved characters like Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim, and Bob Cratchit. The play runs through weekends from Dec. 1 to Dec. 17 at Theatre Bristol’s ARTspace in Bristol, Tennessee. The show promises a unique experience, as Theatre Bristol producer Samantha Gray stated, emphasizing that "if people think they’ve seen 'A Christmas Carol,' they’ve not seen this."

Bristol Ballet's "The Nutcracker"

Celebrating its 75th season, the Bristol Ballet presents "The Nutcracker" in historic downtown Bristol and Richlands, Virginia. The performances occur on Dec. 2 at Southwest Virginia Community College and return to the Paramount Bristol stage for three performances on Dec. 8 and 9. This year's rendition includes a special "Pupcracker" event at the noon performance on Dec. 9, featuring a pet adoption event in partnership with the Sullivan County Animal Shelter. Artistic and Development Director Amanda Hairston assures another successful year, reflecting on the magical experience of the previous year's performance. The ballet pays homage to the region’s Appalachian music history, with Erin Ginn and Jace Coronado reprising their roles as the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Cavalier.

A Festive Treat for All

Both shows offer a unique opportunity to dive into the Christmas spirit, each bringing their own flavor to these timeless stories. While Theatre Bristol's "A Christmas Carol" offers a fresh take on Dickens' classic, the Bristol Ballet's "The Nutcracker" infuses local cultural elements into the beloved ballet. These performances are not only entertainment but also serve as a reminder of the rich artistic heritage of Bristol, Tennessee. Audiences can expect an enriching experience full of holiday cheer and a touch of Bristol's unique charm.


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John is a writer and journalist with a passion for travel, adventure, and the outdoors. You can find him at HTTP://Muckrack.com/john-dabbs.

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