Originally Published: January 1, 2004 7 p.m.
The props blend into submission as the actors steal the stage with morbidly funny and morbidly scary conversations and body language.
Jonathan Perpich stars brilliantly as Ebenezer Scrooge, the grouchy, stingy employer of Bob Cratchit (the wonderful David Pickett), a cheerful, dedicated assistant. Since the Christmas Eve death of his friend and business partner, Jacob Marley (the scary and astounding Chris McFarland) seven years ago, Scrooge has hated Christmas, along with all the other days of the year.
Through visions of his own life, Scrooge learns that generosity and friendship can help him overcome his Christmas-time blues.
And of course, D. Rogers Luben, the Arizona Classical Theatre member who adapted "A Christmas Carol" for this year's production, steals the show with his humor, both as the singing (bearded) Mrs. Dilber and as the jovial Ghost of Christmas Now.
The combination of lighting, directing, costumes and especially acting make "A Christmas Carol" very scary, but even more touching in its joyful ending.