Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

'A Christmas Carol'

Posted December 10, 2007
Updated October 12, 2011

How many of you have seen a "Christmas Carol" by Ira David Wood?  What were your favorite parts?  

I took the family to the opening night last week at the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh and laughed my heart out as usual.  Wood tweaks the script every year to include current events.  This year he tapped into the popular Badger car commercials, his daughter's relationship with outrageous musician Marilyn Manson, the drought and even entertainer Randy Parton's troubles in Roanoke Rapids.

Surely, Charles Dickens would smile at Wood's fresh and funny interpretation of this holiday classic.  Stress abounds this time of year for many.  Ira David has a unique ability to defuse stress with his warmth and wit.  His production is in its 33rd year.  At age 60 Wood says he doesn't need to apply as much make-up for the role.

The show runs through this Wednesday at Memorial Auditorium. 


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  • alx Dec 12, 2007

    the show is awesome, the guy can go in & out of character with ease. our state is lucky to have him, i saw the show friday night. i loved his playful jab at the mayor of raleugh

  • toocutefb Dec 11, 2007

    This is my 15th year in seeing the play and we have always enjoyed it until this year.I DIDNOT like the Marlyn Mansion part. This is supposed to be a family show and I thought that was untasteful. His daughter needs alot of prayer seeing such a person as that. I hope that next year he will not have that in it. What gets me is that he (Marlyn Mansion) is a known devil worshiper and then he puts him in a play that has Christian songs and theme to it. What a shame.

  • olexik Dec 11, 2007

    I've seen this rendition of A Christmas Carol several times, but the most memorable performance I saw was in 2001. In the wake of 9/11, the lessons learned from this musical seemed extra potent: giving selflessly and loving unconditionally.

    Here's hoping Ira David Wood III continues playing Scrooge for as long as possible. Whoever replaces him (if that's possible) will have ENORMOUS shoes to fill.

  • Amused Dec 10, 2007

    I've seen this performance 3 times. This year's production is the best that I have attended. Ira is just GREAT! I love his interpretation of Scrooge! You'll laugh and cry. My favorite part I guess is "The Badger" from the insurance commercials.

  • computer trainer Dec 10, 2007

    If you have not seen Ira David Wood in "A Christmas Carol" you have missed a treat. I truly love him. He makes me laugh until my sides hurt!

  • bornbredtarheel Dec 10, 2007

    I haven't seen it yet, but I'd like to. I did see "The Little Prince" at the Paul Green Theater on the UNC campus this past Saturday - It was wonderful!

  • TruthBKnown Dec 10, 2007

    Just bought my tickets for Wednesday night's show!

  • justbcauz Dec 10, 2007

    Ira David Wood III is an absolute genius.

    This year, my favorite part was, "Goodnight, Muhammad!"

  • Riverracer Dec 10, 2007

    One of these years I will get up there to see it again. I saw it several years ago and loved it. Bill, I missed you and your blog last week. Hope all is well.

  • debbjo Dec 10, 2007

    It is absolutely wonderful -- even better this year than in the past -- which is remarkable in itself! My family goes every year and loves it every year. My adult children say it can't be Christmas without it, so going is a family tradition to kick off the holiday season. My favorite part is the "dance" with a Young Scrooge and Laura, his lost love. It is so beautiful. And then there is all the laughter!

    I wish everyone could see the show!




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Bill Leslie