Victorian Opera announces adaptation of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol on World Opera Day

Victorian-Opera-2022-A-Christmas-CarolTo celebrate World Opera Day, Victorian Opera announces a new adaptation of Charles Dickens’ classic novel A Christmas Carol as part of its Season 2022. The company’s full season will be announced on Tuesday 9 November 2021.

The new opera by celebrated composer Graeme Koehne (Love Burns) and acclaimed writer Anna Goldsworthy (The Magic Pudding – the opera) will premiere at the Palais Theatre, St Kilda in December 2022.

Ebenezer Scrooge, the Ghosts of Christmas’ Past, Present, and Yet to Come, as well as Tiny Tim and the Cratchit Family, are transported to contemporary Melbourne in a sparkling reimagination of this timeless tale.

With Koehne’s flair for lastingly memorable melodies alongside Goldsworthy’s gift for storytelling, A Christmas Carol will warm audiences’ hearts at its world premiere.

“It was a delight to be invited into this project,” said Anna Goldsworthy. “I have fond memories of my previous collaboration with Victorian Opera, The Magic Pudding, and tremendous admiration for Graeme Koehne, who is not only a dear friend and colleague but one of Australia’s most distinguished composers, marrying an instinctive lyricism to deep knowledge of craft.

“And Dickens’ message in A Christmas Carol is both timeless and expansive, and readily incorporates the diversity and liveliness of contemporary Melbourne. This is an opportune moment for his call to our better selves.”

Koehne and Goldsworthy’s A Christmas Carol is one of three Australian operas being presented in Victorian Opera’s Season 2022. Composer Simon Bruckard and librettist Emma Muir-Smith’s The Selfish Giant receives a return season following its Green Room Award-winning debut in 2019.

Following its postponement in 2021, Victorian Opera also presents the world premiere of The Butterfly Lovers; composed by Artistic Director Richard Mills with a libretto by Singaporean playwright Joel Tan. The Butterfly Lovers is a co-production between Victorian Opera and Singapore’s Wild Rice theatre.

Reflecting on Victorian Opera’s commitment to commissioning new Australian opera, Richard Mills reflects: “Victorian Opera has a long track record of commissioning and also of enabling second and third performances of new works so that they pass into the repertoire consciousness of the opera business,” he said.

“Each commission is carefully curated with a view to ensuring the musical and theatrical viability of each new work before they are revealed to the general public,” said Mr Mills.

Details of these productions and Victorian Opera’s full Season 2022 will be announced on Tuesday 9 November at 6:30pm. For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Victorian Opera to present Charles Dickens’ classic novel A Christmas Carol in 2022 (supplied)