A Christmas Carol by Northern Ballet Theatre @ The Theatre Royal

As one who has had an interest in ballet since I could demand a tutu (and then be disappointed that wearing one in public was considered a social faux pas even when 4 years old) I was intrigued by what the Northern Ballet would have to offer. My lovely boyfriend, who probably had a night of Top Gear in mind before being forced to join me, was not as curious…

Billed as “a Christmas treat for everyone” combining “traditional ballet and captivating theatre”, this would certainly be a different experience from the very traditional Royal Ballet productions I had thus far been limited to. However, instead of being the slightly below par cheese fest I was prepared for in all my dancing snobbery, the production is a delightful mélange displaying classical and more freestyle style ballet. There are carol singers, a frankly adorable collection of children, and the company’s Victoria Simpson and Guiliano Contadini undoubtedly steal the show as the hilarious Mr and Mrs Fezziwig. Although if even the ballet virgin that accompanied me could identify Tindall, Bob Cratchit, as the true virtuoso of the production then you can probably judge the skill of the dancer.

My only concern would be the lack of dancing from the protagonist. Despite some fantastically employed gestures and frankly borderline disturbing face makeup, he spends the majority of the show meandering around stage in a nightie. Otherwise, it was a fantastic night. Although anyone with a nervous disposition should be wary of the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come… But I shall end on the best piece of advertising the production could get: “I actually quite enjoyed myself”, as spoken by a reluctant bloke.

Louisa Wells

ArtsArts Reviews

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