Everyone knows the classic Charles Dickens story A Christmas Carol, and it seems that almost everyone has had a go at telling the tale on stage or screen.
Which means that when you stage it, you are up against some pretty stiff competition.
The really good news is that the version which is currently being performed at The Core at Corby Cube is right up there among the best you could possibly wish to see.
Just in case you don’t know the story - and I’m sure you do - the 1843 novella by Charles Dickens tells the story of greedy miser Ebenezer Scrooge, a man so consumed by the pursuit of money that he has come to hate Christmas, but is transformed after being visited by a series of ghosts.
For just over an hour the fantastically energetic cast, led by director Gary Sefton as Scrooge himself, light up the theatre.
There are, of course, dark moments in this well-known tale, but there are also plenty of laughs and the ultimate redemption of Mr Scrooge sends you on your way with a spring in your step and a smile on your face.
But let’s go back to the beginning.
The relaxed and talented cast mingled and engaged with the audience as they entered the auditorium, offering “snowballs” to one and all for use later in the show.
I won’t give away the secret, but they came in handy and this was far from the only piece of audience participation.
Sefton, who directed The Core’s very first show six years ago, is superb as the miser transformed.
The appearance of Marley’s ghost is a brilliant piece of theatre and superbly portrayed by Andy Williams, who excels in a number of roles.
The other cast members all deserve a namecheck as well; Stuart Angell, Miriam Grace Edwards, Laura Schofield, Tom Wainwright and Kim Wright are all excellent.
And the younger members of the cast, all local performers, are great. Take a bow Chloe Golden, Ella Golden, Oli Hackett, Sophie Lloyd, Adam MacNeil and Archie McDonald.
Together, this mix of young and old talent have produced a fun and engaging night out.
In his programme notes Sefton says: “I’ve put together a really talented team to tell this story as best we can, and all of us have worked hard to give the town and the county a show it can be proud of.”
They have succeeded.
And as the director himself said at the end of the show, tell your friends and spread the word, this is a show not to be missed.
You’d be a Scrooge to deny your family such a great night out.
A Christmas Carol can be seen at The Core at Corby Cube until Saturday, December 31.
For tickets and more information visit www.thecorecorby.com or call 01536 470470.
The show is suitable for children aged six and over.