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David Bintley – Sally Beamish

A Christmas Carol

2 h 15 min, Incl. 1 interval (30 min)
1.12.2023 – 30.12.2023
Main Stage
Price range
Age recommendation

The spirit of Christmas as a new ballet

The miserly and cold-hearted Ebenezer Scrooge has no interest in Christmas or other people. At night, however, the spirits of Christmas take him to visit the past, the present, and the future. Will Scrooge come to understand the meaning of Christmas?

Charles Dickens’s Christmas tale of virtue and justice has enchanted theatre-goers for more than 150 years. Now the story set in 19th century London is seen as an affecting ballet, which premieres at the Finnish National Ballet in the festive season of 2023. The impactful visuals of the production recreate the industrialising Victorian city, showcasing the contrast between the upper middle classes’ Christmas finery and the wretched conditions of the urban poor.


It’s the morning of Christmas Eve and Londoners are making last minute preparations for the festive season. The miserly, cold-hearted Ebenezer Scrooge, however, doesn’t like the jolly bustling around him, and nor does he like Christmas. He shoos away the charity workers collecting money for the poor, and he refuses to join his nephew Fred’s family for Christmas. Bob Cratchit who works for Scrooge is shivering with cold, as his penny-pinching master doesn’t let him add more coals to the fire.

While walking the streets, Scrooge hears a haunting call and shuts himself in his home. The ghost of Scrooge’s deceased partner, the equally miserly Jacob Marley, wants to warn him about his terrible fate – he must carry around heavy shackles for eternity. That night Scrooge gets to meet three ghosts.

The Ghost of Christmas past takes Scrooge to his childhood, where the little boy dreams of literary heroes but must bend to the demands of his strict headmaster and father. The young Scrooge and Marley are appointed as trainees in a shop and Scrooge proposes to his first love, Belle. The men are successful in their career and take over the shop, but Belle notices Scrooge cares more for money than for love and leaves him.

The Ghost of Christmas Present leads Scrooge to see Christmas at the Cratchit household. Their little boy, Tiny Tim , is seriously ill, and the Cratchits live in poverty on Bob’s small salary. Fred is enjoying a family Christmas full of happiness without his uncle Scrooge. Scrooge begins to regret his behaviour towards his only relative Fred and his family.

The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come shows the Cratchit family gathering around Tiny Tim’s small coffin to grieve for their lost son. At the cemetery Scrooge is also made to visit his own grave.

As Scrooge wakes up on Christmas morning, he realises that it’s not too late to join in the celebrations. He hastens to Fred’s party and apologises to the family. Scrooge then continues on his way to Bob’s house, laden down with a delicious Christmas feast. Scrooge has turned into a better friend and master than anyone else in the entire town or the world ever. To Tiny Tim, who begins to recover from his illness, Scrooge becomes like a second father.

The full synopsis can be found in the programme leaflet.

“Dickens’ story of the miserly, embittered Scrooge and his redemption through the ghostly visitations he receives over the course of one Christmas Eve, has an iconic status in the English speaking world. Almost two centuries after it was first published A Christmas Carol continues to proliferate not only in the printed form but in a multitude of theatrical and cinematic versions, it is in fact as much a part of Christmas as Christmas trees and Santa Claus.”

– David Bintley, choreograph

creative team

David Bintley
Sally Beamish
Paul Murphy
Anna Fleischle
Anna Fleischle
Lighting Design
Mark Henderson
Projection Design
Anna Fleischle


Cast will be published later.

listen to the music

Sally Beamish has composed a completely new score for A Christmas Carol. It will be performed in Helsinki by the Orchestra of the Finnish National Opera.

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