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Director: James Adler
presented by An Eagle’s Nest Theatre, Capital Theatre Productions and Shakespeare Globe Centre New Zealand

at Middleton Grange School Performing Arts Centre, Christchurch
16 Nov 2012

Oamaru Opera House, Oamaru
17 Nov 2012

Picton Little Theatre, Picton
19 Nov 2012

Old St Paul's, Wellington
21 Nov 2012

Hawkes Bay Opera House, Hastings
22 Nov 2012

Graham Young Youth Theatre, Tauranga Boys’ College, Tauranga
24 Nov 2012

Musgrove Studio, Maidment Theatre, Auckland
26 Nov 2012

Reviewed by:  Lindsay ClarkJohn Smythe;

Phil Zachariah will be Charles Dickens in a one-man show for eight one-night stands in venues throughout the country from 18 – 28 November.

To commemorate the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens' birth, a stunning recreation of the readings with which Dickens toured the world will be presented in eight cities around New Zealand. Phil Zachariah and director James Adler (the founder of An Eagle's Nest Theatre) have worked directly from the original prompt copy and eyewitness accounts to create a performance that truly channels the spirit of Dickens.

Ebenezer Scrooge may be the greediest man in England. He has no charity or sympathy for anyone and takes great joy in avoiding social engagements. On Christmas Eve, Scrooge is haunted by a vision of his deceased business partner, Jacob Marley.  Marley warns that his greed will cause him nothing but misery in the afterlife, and that his salvation depends on heeding the lessons of three ghosts that will come his way. That night, as Scrooge ventures forth with the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future, he begins to see that it's never too late to make a change.

"One of the most engaging, powerful and suspenseful nights of theatrical story-telling." (

In recent years the phenomena that is Mr Dickens just keeps on growing. In 2011 Mr Dickens (aka Phil Zachariah) made his premier European tour and in 2012, a more extensive worldwide tour is taking place. 

Phil began in applied physics, but eventually made the logical transition to theatre. When he graduated from the National Theatre in Melbourne in 1979, he was already working in theatre-in-education: writing, acting, composing & directing, much of it in partnership with his opera singer brother, Evan. Along the way he also attended workshops with Stephen Berkoff who invited him to perform in London.

In the 80s, he also performed with the Victoria State Opera Schools Tour, Ars Nova early music group, and as a storyteller with the Folkloric Theatre Company. Later, he spent 3 years in an astronomy show with the CSIRO Double Helix touring troupe.

In recent years, he's appeared in a swag of productions, including Sleuth (Andrew Wyke), Freedom of the City (The Judge), Hamlet (Claudius & Polonius), Romeo & Juliet (The Nurse) and most recently he has he has appeared in two stage productions: Cosi (Henry) and Macbeth (Duncan & Porter).

In the world of radio he has been George Bernard Shaw in Shaw; The Music Critic for 3MBS, and as both Shaw & John Ruskin in a series on critics for the Sunday Arts program on Radio National. 

When young, Phil & his brother were taken by their mother, Vida, to see the great Emlyn Williams present the Dickens Readings. After Phil became theatrically entangled, his mother, a great fan of Dickens, suggested that he should perform them. In 2003 En Route's Adrian D'Aprano decided that the time had come and with James Adler as the logical choice as director, her vision has been realised. 

In November it can be seen in Christchurch, Oamaru (featured in its Heritage Festival), Picton, Wellington, Hastings, Tauranga, Auckland, Whangarei.

“I would urge anyone who has the rare opportunity to see this show…to do so…whatever the day of the year and whatever continent you're in!” (Paris 2012).

This is a joint tour between An Eagle Nest, Capital Theatre Productions and Shakespeare Globe Centre New Zealand.

“Don't be a Scrooge – reconnect with family and friends and fall in love with the original Christmas story as you've never experienced it before.”

Duration: 75 minutes (no interval) – unless otherwise stated

Christchurch performance:
Middleton Grange School Hall
Date & Time:
Friday 16 November 2012 7.30pm
Adults $30 | Seniors $20 | Students $10 + $1.50 booking fee 
Door sales will also be available

Oamaru performance:
Oamaru Opera House
Date & Time:
Saturday 17 November 2012 7.30pm
Tickets: TicketDirect 
Adult $49.90 | Seniors/Students $42.00 | Children $20.00
Family Package only available over the counter: $110.00
pkg Adult (2 adults), pkg Child (2 Children), extra child $10.00
Victorian Supper will be savoury & sweet scones with Whitestone Cheese Boards and Tea & Coffee

Picton performance:
Picton Little Theatre, Box Office or Take Note
Date & Time: Monday 19 November 2012 7.30pm
Non-Members: $25 | Members $20 | Students $15

Wellington performance:
Old St Pauls, Mulgrave Street
Date & Time:
Wednesday 21 November 2012 7.30pm
Tickets: | Door sales will also be available
Adults $30 | Seniors $20 | Students $10 + $1.50 booking fee

Hawke's Bay performance:
Hawke's Bay Opera House  
Date & Time:
Thursday 22 November 2012, 7.30pm
Tickets: 0800Ticketek
Adults $36 | Seniors & Students $32 | Groups (10+) $32 | Encore Club $26 | Service fees apply
Duration: 90 minutes (incl 15 minute interval) 

Tauranga performance:
Graham Young Youth Theatre, Tauranga Boys' College
Date & Time:
Saturday 24 November 2012 7.30pm
Tickets: Baycourt
$20 Adults | $15 Seniors | $10 Students | Door Sales available from 7.00pm

Auckland performance:
Maidment Studio Theatre  
Date & Time:
Monday 26 November 2012 7.30pm
Tickets: Maidment Box Office  
Adults $35 | Seniors & Students $25
Duration: 90 minutes (incl 15 minute interval)

Whangarei performance:
Forum North
Date & Time:
Wednesday 28 November 2012 7.30pm
Tickets: Ticketek  
Adults $35 | Seniors $25 | Students $15 - Booking fee will apply | Door sales will also be available