This traditional re-telling of Charles Dicken’s timeless classic will come alive on your stage using the
suggested carols or ones of your own. Three spirits take the miserly Ebeneezer Scrooge on a journey
through his life where he learns the true meaning of Christmas and life.
A Christmas Carol
Adapted by Karl B. Peterson
from Charles Dickens' story.
Karl B. Peterson
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List of Scenes
1. Exterior Loncon city street at dusk-center
2. Interior of Scrooge’s counting house at dusk-stage right interior
3. Exterior London street, dusk-center
4. Interior of Scrooge’s apartment, evening-stage left.
5. Exterior of boarding school, day-center
6. Fezziwig’s warehouse, night-center
7. Fezziwig’s warehouse, night-center
8. Belle’s house, night-right
9. Interior of Scrooge’s apartment, evening-stage left.
10. Interior of Cratchit’s house, night-stage right.
11. Interior of Fred’s house-center
12. Exterior Loncon city street at night-center
13. Interior of Scrooge’s bedroom-stage left
14. Exterior Loncon city street at dusk-center.
15. Interior of Cratchit’s house, night-stage right.
16. Interior of Scrooge’s apartment, day-stage left.
17. Exterior Loncon city street at day-center
18. Counting House, day-stage right
19. Exterior Loncon city street at day-center
Description of the Set
The play has many scene changes so it is important that they happen quickly, flowing from
one scene to the next like a movie
Most of the scenes that have fewer characters happen on the sides of the stage. You can
either build a building front to slide in front of it when the scene is not happening there, or
have a platform you can slide off stage when it is not in use, so you can change the scenes
while the play takes place on other parts of the stage.
Narrator, done as a voice over.
Ebeneezer Scrooge, miser
Bob Cratchit, Scrooge’s employee
Fred, Scrooge’s cheerful nephew
1st Missionary, sings and collects money for charity.
2nd Missionary also sings and collects money for charity.
3rd Missionary sings and collects money for charity too.
Tiny Tim, Bob Cratchit’s disabled and cheerful son.
Theodore, Scrooge’s tenet
Chorus Leader, leads the Chorus.
Jacob Marley, Scrooge’s long dead partner in business
Christmas Past, a spirit.
Fan, Scrooge’s young sister.
Little Scrooge, Scrooge as a young boy.
Fezziwig, Scrooge’s kind-hearted boss in years long past
Mrs. Fezziwig, his wife
Belle, Scrooge’s former fiancé from years gone by
Young Scrooge, Scrooge as a young man
Christmas Present, a spirit
Mrs. Cratchit, Bob’s wife
Peter Cratchit, Bob’s older son
Belinda Cratchit, Bob’s younger daughter
Martha Cratchit, Bob’s older daughter
2nd Chorus Leader, the conductor of the chorus in years gone by
Marie, a young lady at Fred’s party
Topper, a young man at Fred’s party
Ignorance, a young spirit in rags.
Want, another young spirit in rags
Christmas Yet to Come, a spirit
Joe, a buyer of stolen property
Caroline, Theodore’s wife
Scene 1—Exterior Village
Chorus sings “Angels We Have Heard on High.”
NARRATOR: Marley was dead. There is no doubt whatsoever about that. The register
of his burial was signed by the clergyman, the clerk, the undertaker and the chief mourner.
(Enter SCROOGE from stage left. He crosses to the office on stage right. ) Scrooge
signed it for he and Marley were the partners for many years. Scrooge was his sole
executor, his sole administrator, his sole friend, and sole mourner. And even Scrooge was
not so dreadfully cut up by the sad event, but that on the very day of the funeral, he
concluded a shrewd business transaction.
Scene 2—Interior Scrooge's Counting House
In the office are two desks, a pot belly stove between them, various filing cabinets, a coal
bucket near SCROOGE’S desk, and a hat rack near the door.
NARRATOR: Scrooge never painted out old Marley's name. There it stood years
afterward above the warehouse door¬--Scrooge and Marley. (SCROOGE goes in and
sits at his desk. Enter CRATCHIT from stage left and he crosses over to the office and
Sometimes people new to the business called Scrooge Scrooge, and sometimes Marley,
but he answered to both names. It was all the same to him. Once upon a time--of all the
good days in the year, on Christmas Eve—Old Scrooge sat busy in his counting house
(He sits down at his desk, then looks down at his meager fire, pokes at it, then goes by
SCROOGE to get another lump of COAL.)
CRATCHIT: Beg your pardon, sir?
SCROOGE: Waste, Mr. Cratchit! Waste! We are here to make money, not spend it. If
you waste my goods you might find yourself without employment!
(CRATCHIT does not get the lump. Instead, goes back to his desk, tries to warm himself
at his CANDLE. Enter FRED from stage left carrying a gift.)
FRED: (Holding out a gift for SCROOGE.) A merry Christmas, uncle! God save you!
SCROOGE: Humbug. (SCROOGE refused gift.)
FRED: Christmas a humbug, uncle? You don't mean that, I am sure! (He sets a gift on
corner of book.)
SCROOGE: I do. Merry Christmas! What is Christmas time but a time for buying things
for which you've no need nor money. A time for finding yourself a year older and not an
hour richer. What reason do you have to be Merry? You're poor
FRED: Come, then. What right have you to be dismal? You're rich enough.
SCROOGE: Bah! (He pushes gift to the floor)
FRED: Don't be cross, uncle! (He picks up gift and sets it back on the table)
SCROOGE: What else can I be when I live in such a world of fools as this? Merry
SCROOGE: Nephew! Keep Christmas in your own way, and let me keep it in mine!
FRED: But you don't keep it!
SCROOGE: Then let me leave it alone. What good has it ever done you?
FRED: There are many things from which I might have derived good, by which I have not
profited, I dare say. Christmas among the rest. But I have always thought of Christmas
time as a time for forgiving. A charitable, pleasant time; the only time I know when men
and women seem to freely open their shut-up hearts. Therefore, Uncle, though it has
never put a scrap of gold or silver in my pocket, I believe that it has done me good, and
will do me good; and I say, "God bless it"! (CRATCHIT starts clapping.)
SCROOGE: (To CRATCHIT, scowling.) Let me hear another sound from you and you'll
keep your Christmas by losing your employment! (He gets up and goes to his filing
cabinet to put some papers in. To FRED) You're quite a powerful speaker, sir. I wonder
you don't go into Parliament!
FRED: Don't be angry, Uncle. Come! Dine with us tomorrow.
SCROOGE: Humbug! Dine with you (he laughs) I'd rather dine with the devil.
FRED: It would be a great joy to me and my wife.
SCROOGE: Your wife—yes I heard she was poor.....didn't bring much into the
marriage. Why did you get married?
FRED: Because I fell in love! I love her and she loves me.
SCROOGE: Because you fell in love! That is the only thing more ridiculous than Merry
Christmas. Good Afternoon!
FRED: I want nothing from you; I ask nothing of you; why can't we be friends?
SCROOGE: (He sits at his desk.) You are wasting my time nephew.....Good Afternoon!
FRED: (He starts to leave, but after a few steps, he turns back to SCROOGE. ) I am
sorry, with all my heart, to find you so resolute. We have never had any quarrel, to which
I have been a party.
FRED: But I'll keep my Christmas humor to the last, so a Merry Christmas, Uncle.
SCROOGE: Good afternoon!
FRED: And a happy New Year!
SCROOGE: Bah, humbug! (Fred walks to CRATCHIT.)
FRED: Merry Christmas, Bob!
CRATCHIT: Merry Christmas, sir. (Exit FRED stage left. Three MISSIONARIES enter
from stage left and cross over to the office. They enter. One of them blows on a tuner to
get their pitch and start singing “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.”)
SCROOGE: Stop that confounded racket! State your business and be quick about it. I
have work to do.
1ST MISSIONARY: Scrooge and Marley, I believe. Do I have the pleasure of
addressing Mr. Scrooge or Mr. Marley?
SCROOGE: (Not looking up.) Mr. Marley has been dead these seven years. He died
this very night.
2ND MISSIONARY: We, no doubt, have his generosity well represented by his
1ST MISSIONARY: (Crosses between SCROOGE’S and CHRATCHIT’S desks.) At
this festive season of the year, Mr. Scrooge, it is more than usually desirable that we
should make some slight provision for the poor and destitute, who suffer greatly at the
3RD MISSIONARY: Many thousands are in want of common comforts, sir.
SCROOGE: Are there no prisons?
2ND MISSIONARY: Plenty of prisons, sir.
SCROOGE: And the workhouses? Are they still in operation?
1ST MISSIONARY: They are.
3RD MISSIONARY: I wish we could say that they are not.
SCROOGE: The Treadmill and the Poor Law are in full vigor, then?
1ST MISSIONARY: Both are very busy, sir.
SCROOGE: Oh! I was afraid from what you said at first that something had stopped
them in their useful course. I am very glad to hear they are still operating.
2ND MISSIONARY: (Not looking up.) A few of us are endeavoring to raise a fund to
buy the poor some meat and drink, and means of warmth because at this time the want is
more keenly felt.
3RD MISSIONARY: What shall I put you down for?
2ND MISSIONARY: You wish to remain anonymous?
SCROOGE: I wish to remain alone. I don't make merry myself at Christmas and I can't
afford to make idle people merry. My taxes help support the establishments I have
mentioned and those who are badly off must go there.
1ST MISSIONARY: Many would rather die.
SCROOGE: If they would rather die, they had better do it and decrease the surplus
2ND MISSIONARY: But, sir! Certainly you don't mean that, sir.
SCROOGE: With all my heart. (He stands and gets a book from off his shelf.) If I could
work my will, every idiot who goes about with "Merry Christmas" on his lips would be
boiled with his own pudding and buried with a stake of holly through the heart!
3RD MISSIONARY: But surely you want to help them!
SCROOGE: It's not my business. (Sitting down at his desk and looking up something in
the book.) It’s enough for a man to understand his own business, and not to interfere
with other people's. Mine occupies me constantly. Good afternoon!
(They exit stage left.)
(CRATCHIT looks at his pocket watch and starts getting his SCARF and COAT on.)
SCROOGE: You'll want all day tomorrow, I suppose.
CRATCHIT: If it is quite convenient, sir.
SCROOGE: It's not convenient and it's not fair. If I were to stop half a crown for it, you'd
think yourself ill-used. And yet, you don't think me ill-used when I pay a day’s wages for
CRATCHIT: Christmas only comes once a year, sir.
SCROOGE: (He stands. He starts buttoning his coat and putting on his scarf.) A poor
excuse for picking a man's pocket every twenty-fifth of December! But I suppose you
must have the whole day. Be here all the earlier the next morning!
CRATCHIT: (He goes out the door.) I promise, sir. Merry Christmas, sir!
(SCROOGE prepares to exit by putting on his cape and hat. The lights dim on the office
and the set changes to the city street.)
Scene 3—A City Street Day
The street is a busy place with many people coming and going with presents. Others are
entering and leaving shops. A group of CAROLERS stand in the middle singing two
verses of “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.” THEODORE stands listening to the music.
Standing on the corner and supported by his small crutch, TINY TIM waits for his father.
The CAROLERS hum another verse during the following scene. Enter CRATCHIT.)
TINY TIM: Father!
CRATCHIT: Tiny Tim! Aren’t you cold waiting out her?
TINY TIM: I was waiting for you, Father.
CRATCHIT: Well, you don’t have to wait any longer! Let’s get you home. (He picks up
TINY TIM: Did you have a nice day at work?
CRATCHIT: Yes, and I was able to get Christmas Day off. I will be home the entire day!
TINY TIM: Oh, Father! That’s wonderful!
CRATCHIT: Let’s get you home! (They exit off left.)
(Choir sings two more verses of “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.”)
(SCROOGE enters from stage left approaches THEODORE, a young, poor man.)
THEODORE: A beautiful song, that was! Expertly done!
CHORUS LEADER: Why, thank you very much, sir!
THEODORE: Sing another!
(The CHORUS hums the same hymn during the following scene. THEODORE sees
SCROOGE coming. THEODORE crosses over to SCROOGE.)
THEODORE: Oh, Mr. Scrooge! Just the man I wanted to see!
SCROOGE: Do you have your loan payment?
THEODORE: I would like to talk to you about, Mr. Scrooge.
SCROOGE: What need is there for talk? You either have the money or you don't.
THEODORE: I know I owe you a great deal of money—
SCROOGE: And you have missed three payments.
THEODORE: I am dreadfully sorry for that, sir.
SCROOGE: Then remedy the situation by making your payments current.
THEODORE: I can't at this time. I need more time.
SCROOGE: And I need my money.
THEODORE: I know you do, sir. But—
SCROOGE: Did you not agree to the terms of the loan?
THEODORE: Yes, but-
SCROOGE: And did you not sign a paper promising to pay the loan back?
THEODORE: It's just I don't have the—
SCROOGE: I feel I have been more than reasonable to wait this long.
THEODORE: You have, sir. It's just that—
SCROOGE: You expect me to give you more time while I get absolutely nothing again?
Are you aware you could go to prison for this?
THEODORE: I am, sir. I just need more time.
SCROOGE: You have it, then. (Starting to exit right.) .
THEODORE: Thank you, Mr. Scrooge!
SCROOGE: You have until tomorrow.
THEODORE: (Quickly crossing to SCROOGE.) But, Mr. Scrooge! That's Christmas
SCROOGE: I am well aware of the calendar.
THEODORE: Where will I find money on Christmas?
SCROOGE: That is none of my concern. Good day.
(SCROOGE crosses away from THEODORE.)
(SCROOGE Stands to the side looking through his pocket transaction book as the
CHORUS finishes their song. The CHORUS LEADER crosses to SCROOGE.)
CHORUS LEADER: Sir, is there a Christmas song you would like to hear? You name
the tune and we will sing it for you!
CHORUS LEADER: But surely you must have a favorite carol you would like to hear on
SCROOGE: Christmas Eve! Humbug! (Exit SCROOGE right. The set changes to
SCROOGE’S apartment while the Chorus sings “Good Christian Men Rejoice!”)
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