Mrs Dilber's Fabulous Bedcurtains.

Full length.
A reimagining of A Christmas Carol without the old rich miser in it at all, but instead centering on Mrs. Dilber - the housekeeper who takes the shirt & bedclothes from his still-warm corpse in the original - and her epic attempt to get some bedcurtains in spite of a series of ghosts and other diversions on a night adjacent to the more familiar story.
Note: There's very...
Full length.
A reimagining of A Christmas Carol without the old rich miser in it at all, but instead centering on Mrs. Dilber - the housekeeper who takes the shirt & bedclothes from his still-warm corpse in the original - and her epic attempt to get some bedcurtains in spite of a series of ghosts and other diversions on a night adjacent to the more familiar story.
Note: There's very little in the way of harsh language - "bastards" is about the worst of it - but I have now included alternate lines for school and TYA productions.
Second note: There is a RADIO PLAY version of this script available for the asking!
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Mrs Dilber's Fabulous Bedcurtains.

Recommended by

  • Morey Norkin:
    25 Mar. 2022
    This may not be the season to BE jolly, but it is certainly the season to READ Jolly! Arthur M, Jolly’s “Mrs. Dilber’s Fabulous Bedcurtains” is simply brilliant. Everything you know from “A Christmas Carol” is there, and then some. With Scrooge’s housekeeper as the central character, Jolly provides clever commentary on the original story, Victorian society, and our current economic imbalances. And did I mention it’s funny? Read it, you’ll see!
  • Molly Wagner:
    11 Jan. 2022
    Finally, Mrs. Dilber gets her say! I love the way that we get to see a holiday classic from the perspective of one of the most underrated characters. As she intercepts the ghosts meant for her crotchety employer she finds herself on a journey of her own. This play takes the beloved characters and flips them on their heads, poking fun at the original text and bringing a new family-friendly holiday tale for those who are burnt out with the old man always at the center of everything.
  • Emma Wood:
    9 Nov. 2021
    There's a lot to love about Mrs Dilber's Fabulous Bedcurtains. The reframing from old rich bloke Scrooge as the centrepiece of A Christmas Carol to the straight talking, working class Mrs Dilber is in itself a joy. This action packed comedy maintains much of the original story line we all know so well while bringing an entirely fresh perspective and bold changes to well loved characters (Tiny Tim can never be seen in the same way again - be warned!) Arthur Jolly's Mrs Dilber has wicked turn of phrase bound to delight audiences.

Character Information

  • Mrs Dilber
    Adult,
    Female
    Mrs Dilber is the cranky housekeeper from the original story - the one who sells Scrooge's shirt and bedclothes taken from his still-warm corpse.
  • Doorknob
    Any,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    A face in the door of Scrooge's house. Its nose is a doorknob.
  • Jaxob Marley
    older,
    Any
    ,
    Any (but probably Male)
    The ghost of Jacob Marley, whose name was changed due to a typo. Pretty much as he is in A Christmas Carol, with chains and all.
  • Ghost of Christmas Past
    child-like,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    A child-like ghost.
  • Ghost of Christmas Present
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Male
    The bluff, hearty adult ghost in a green robe and Christmas wreath from the original story.
  • Ghost of Christmas Future
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    A silent skeleton in a dark robe.
  • Ghost of Christmas Truce
    child,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    A childlike spirit, sings in German. The Ghost of the Christmas Truce during WW1.
  • Bob Cratchitt
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Male
    A clerk - timid about confronting the problems around him.
  • Emily Cratchitt
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Female
    The long suffering wife of Bob. She is more aware of the dangers of Tiny Tim - but societally unable to do much about it.
  • Tiny Tim
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    Tiny Tim - the Demon Creature of Bishopsgate. A hulking monster.
  • Martha Cratchit
    Child ,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    The eldest child of the Cratchitts. Works as a child laborer at a cotton mill.
  • Belinda Cratchit
    Child ,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    The youngest daughter of the Cratchits - sweet and innocent.
  • Peter Cratchit
    Child ,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    A middle child of the Cratchits.
  • Sweet Tiny Tim
    Child ,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    The familiar angelic child with the lame leg from the original story. Small role, suitable for a child actor; if ability allows, could be hoisted on Bob Cratchit's shoulders in the final scene.
  • Frederick
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Male
    The nephew of a rich miser, unaware of how well off he is.
  • Young Ebenezer
    Child,
    White
    ,
    Male
    Ebenezer Scrooge as a young child.
  • Young Belle
    Child,
    Any
    ,
    Female
    Childhood friend of Young Ebenezer
  • Scrooge (18)
    18,
    White
    ,
    Male
    Scrooge as a young man.
  • Belle (18)
    18,
    Any
    ,
    Female
    Belle as a young woman.
  • Abigail
    Young adult,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    Sister to Belle (18)
  • Maureen
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Female
    The upper class fiancée of Frederick.
  • Rose
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Any (but probably Female)
    The upper class sister of Maureen.
  • Topper
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Any (but probably male.)
    The upper class bachelor friend of Frederick Scrooge.
  • Fila N. Thropist
    adult,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    An altruist of means, seeking charity for the poor.
  • Benny Factor
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    Another victorian altruist of means, seeking charity for the poor.
  • Mr. Fezziwig
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Male
    The bluff old Capitalist factory owner from the original story.
  • Mrs. Fezziwig
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Female
    A Capitalist Co-Owner of a factory from the original story.
  • Mean Child
    Child,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    Taunter of Young Ebenezer
  • Meaner Child
    Child,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    Joins in taunting Young Ebenezer
  • Cook
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    A party-goer.
  • Cook's Brother
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Male
    A party-goer. According to the original work, the "particular friend" of the Milkman. Should be the same gender, however the casting plays out.
  • Milkman
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Male
    A party-goer. According to the original work, the "particular friend" of the Cook's Brother. Should be the same gender.
  • Little Match Girl
    Child,
    Any
    ,
    Female
    A purveyor of inflammatory devices, freezing to death on a cold night.
  • Dr. Jekyll
    Adult,
    Any
    ,
    Male
    A mad scientist who is absolutely not experimenting on himself. (He is.)
  • Sweep
    child,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    Child chimney sweep, hawking their services on the street.
  • Chestnut Vendor
    Any,
    Any
    ,
    Any
    A street vendor, selling hot roasted chestnuts.

Development History

  • Reading
    ,
    Loft Ensemble Theatre
    ,
    2022

Production History

  • Professional
    ,
    Loft Ensemble
    ,
    2022