Review: ‘A Christmas Carol’ at Sacramento Theatre Company

A Christmas Carol: Wed 7pm, Thu 7pm, Fri 8pm, Sat 2pm & 8pm, Sun 2pm; Through 12/29; $30-$45; Sacramento Theatre Company, 1419 H St.; (916) 443-6722;
Rated 5.0

Sacramento Theater Company's musical production of A Christmas Carol was commissioned by the company 32 years ago, and it has become an annual Sacramento holiday tradition. Written by Richard Hellesen with music by David DeBerry, it's easy to understand the play's popularity.

The quality of any Christmas Carol show is set by the actor who plays Scrooge. Matt K. Miller is playing the role for the eighth time, and it's clear why he's invited back year after year. He's perfect—completely believable as the curmudgeon, as the frightened man dealing with the supernatural and as the reformed grump with the enthusiasm of a child realizing that he has not missed Christmas Day after all.

Directed by Michael Laun and Miranda D. Lawson (who also plays the wife of Bob Cratchit), the show has a recorded musical track, so the action is kept lively and crisp.

There is a cast of 35, some of whom share roles with one or two others. Characters deliver descriptions of what is about to take place, and then step seamlessly into the scene itself.

In addition to Miller, special kudos to Ryan Blanning, who plays both The Ghost of Christmas Present and Scrooge's first boss, Fezziwig, and to Mike DiSalvo as Bob Cratchit.

Sacramento Theatre Company's A Christmas Carol is a long-standing holiday favorite and this 32nd anniversary production does it proud. It's the Christmas show that everyone should see at least once.