Sugar Hill Players Guild continues classic holiday story with ‘Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge’

A cast of Christmas spirits will haunt the stage of the Eagle Theater as the Sugar Hill Players Guild performs “The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge.”

Set one year after the events of the seminal Charles Dickens novel, “A Christmas Carol,” Ebenezer Scrooge falls back into old ways as he sues Jacob Marley and the three Christmas ghosts. The spirits respond by hiring prominent English barrister Solomon Rothschild for their defense. 

Scrooge chooses to represent himself, and one by one, he is forced to face iconic characters from the original story, including Bob Cratchet, Scrooge’s nephew Fred, his sister Fan, former fiancee Belle and of course all the ghosts take the stand and give their accounts of that fateful Christmas Eve night. Striking a balance between playful humor and haunting depth, “The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge” beautifully revives one of the holidays’ greatest tales.

The Players Guild performs a holiday show every year, sometimes based around Halloween themes, but more often Christmas. 

“When I was looking for a holiday show and read this script, I loved the humor in it,” said Ane Mulligan, artistic director for the Sugar Hill Players Guild. 

She and the board of directors are responsible for choosing which shows the company performs, and she also acts as the creative head behind major production decisions. 

“It’s different, yet because of the main character being Ebenezer Scrooge, people know something about it,” Mulligan said of the latest production. “They will see parts drawn directly from [the] original ‘A Christmas Carol’ … I believe ‘The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge’ will be enjoyed by all.”

Mulligan is also excited to try out some of the Eagle’s new technical aspects. In particular, the theater has a new sound system that can create acoustic effects that will be employed for the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come, as well as high-tech lighting elements to simulate flames.

The show will star Tom Heagy as Ebenezer Scrooge and Wade Williams as Solomon Rothschild. 

“We have an outstanding lineup of actors,” Mulligan said. “Heagy brings insight and an array of emotions to the character of Scrooge. Williams adds a certain and unexpected savoir faire to the character of Rothschild.”

On having an opportunity to play a dream role, Heagy said, “I have wanted to play the part of Ebenezer Scrooge since the first time I saw ‘A Christmas Carol.’ I believe we all have a little Scrooge in us and I know we are all in need of some redemption.

“This play gives the audience a chance to see a little more about how Scrooge ‘became’ Scrooge as well as reminding us that not everything is as it appears,” Heagy continued. “It’s been a wonderful experience and I’m certain the audience will be entertained and perhaps even have their hearts tugged on a bit.”

The show is family-friendly with a positive message and serves as a fun adaptation of a holiday staple. The innovative set, built by a talented crew, is unusual because it will be mostly set pieces as opposed to wall flats, and it provides the perfect environment to pull audiences into the courtroom drama. “The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge” can be enjoyed by children and adults alike for its harmony of clever humor and profound depth of emotion.

“The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge” will be performed at the Eagle Theater in Sugar Hill at 7 p.m. Nov. 12, 13, 19 and 20, and at 3 p.m. Nov. 14 and 21. Tickets for the show are $20 for adults and $15 for seniors, students, military personnel and first responders. Tickets can be purchased online here.

If you go

  • What: “The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge,” presented by the Sugar Hill Players Guild 
  • When: 7 p.m. Nov. 12, 13, 19, and 20, and 3 p.m. Nov. 14 and 21
  • Where: Eagle Theatre at Sugar Hill, 5029 W. Broad St.
  • Cost: $20 for adults and $15 for seniors, students, military personnel and first responders
  • For more information: Visit eagleatsugarhill.com/event/the-trial-of-ebenezer-scrooge/ 

FEATURED PHOTO: Performers with the Sugar Hill Players Guild rehearse a scene from “The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge.” Photo by Chris Bellows