A Shiny Life For Me!

a personal review blog by Bianca

Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Christmas Carol

Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Christmas Carol
26 December 2022
Southbank Centre
4.0 out of 5.0 stars

And here it is, the fifth and final version of Christmas Carol I got to enjoy in December!

I’m a bit behind on reviews, so it’s a mid-January holiday post for you.

Now this one is quite something else. Styled as a musical with music written by Dolly Parton, and set in a coal mining town in the Appalachian mountains in the 30s, it takes A Christmas Carol to a new level.

While the main flesh of the story is of course kept in tradition, with Scrooge being a stingy capitalist who doesn’t care about who he hurts along the way, it is dressed up in a very different gown! Not only does Scrooge own the mines and the company stores and basically the entire town, he also gets a richer backstory that feels more human and intense in a way, with him betraying even Marley to get ahead in life.

Of course the whole thing has the distinct signature of Dolly all over it, and it works incredibly well despite hauling the entire story across the world to a very different continent.

I loved the music, especially Marley’s ‘Hell’, though it was decidedly more Christianity focused than the original story. Which shouldn’t be much of a surprise for anyone who knows Dolly, of course.

The set is quite basic but surprisingly versatile, putting the focus on the plot and songs. I definitely enjoyed the show but also think there’s room for improvement in the future. Still, a very different take on the well known story and a welcome addition to my Christmas Carol adventures!

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