That’s not the case, however, in a reworking of the classic tale called “Mrs. Bob Cratchit’s Wild Christmas Binge,” presented by the University of San Diego’s undergraduate Theatre Arts program.
“I think people will like this play because it references popular stories like ‘A Christmas Carol’ and ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ but twists them up for a playful look at the side of Christmas we don’t usually see portrayed,” said Carrie Klewin, the play’s director.
In the production written by Christopher Durang, the Three Ghosts’ magic is off, Scrooge keeps showing up at the wrong time, and Mrs. Cratchit, longing to escape from her 1840s existence, is planning on jumping off the London Bridge. This farcical send-up places Scrooge’s tale of redemption and gentle grace squarely on its head.
Klewin thinks Mrs. Cratchit is a character with whom we can all identify. “She says out loud what many people only think to themselves. It’s a bit like watching a talk show start to unravel once the hosts gets them to speak honestly. Once the cork is popped, all of the pent-up emotions bubble to the surface. This is fun to watch because we’ve all witnessed or experienced several similar eruptions around the holidays.”
“I hope that our audiences will leave primarily thinking about the meaning of ‘holiday spirit’ and what advantages there are to approaching life with a sense of humor.”
— Shannon Cajka ‘11
“Mrs. Bob Cratchit’s Wild Christmas Binge” will be presented at 7:30 p.m. from Dec. 1 to 3 and at 2 p.m. on Dec. 4 in the USD Black Box Theatre (Camino Hall 131). Tickets are $11, general admission and $8, students and seniors. Tickets are available at the Hahn University Center Box Office or at the door, starting 45 minutes before the show. Go to www.sandiego.edu/cas/theatrearts for more information.
Photo courtesy of Pavlo Bosyy