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Phil Willmott

A Big Star is Heading to the Old Vic this Christmas. But who?

The Old Vic There’s jolly but tantalising seasonal news from The Old Vic, that stately old lady of West End Theatres.

The institution is one of the venues that’s made the best use of on line streaming during the current shut down; broadcasting not just old recordings but specially curated productions making best use of the medium.

But what next? The Artistic Director Matthew Warchus has got us all very intrigued with the following announcement.

"back in May I received an extraordinary email from a well-known actor offering to help in any way he could and expressing a long-standing wish to play Scrooge.

Although at the time our conversations revolved around bringing back a live audience in time for Christmas, that clearly is no longer possible, and I'm incredibly grateful to him and to everyone for willingly agreeing to change tack and join us in reconfiguring this much loved production into an In Camera event. I'm excited to tell the story in this new format, with the powerful addition of close-ups, and hope it will provide much needed sustenance for audiences (a mince pie or a satsuma if not a chocolate digestive) on this gruelling journey. We will be announcing full casting very soon."

But who can it be? The most consistent rumour I’ve heard is that they once captained a much loved star ship!

The Old Vic tell us that Jack Thorne's five-star adaptation of Dickens' novel A Christmas Carol will play live, as a full-scale production, for 16 performances only. 80,000 tickets will be available for the run, with all ticket-holders for the live show (which has now been postponed) guaranteed a chance to watch the live-stream.

Tickets will go on sale in November with tickets priced from £10 to £65 – only one ticket is required per group on the same screen.

Additionally, Sheila Atim will pen a new monologue, Burn, performed by Weruche Opia and debuting on YouTube as part of the venue's 'One Voice' series.