A WONDERHEADS Christmas Carol – Program

The Belfry Theatre presents

A WONDERHEADS Christmas Carol

Based on A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens


Kate Braidwood – Ebenezer Scrooge
Jessica Hickman* – Marley, Fred, Tiny Tim, Belle,
The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come
Sarah Robertson – Coroner, Mrs. Cratchit, Mrs. Fezziwig,
The Ghost of Christmas Past
Pedro M. Siqueira – Bob Cratchit, Mr. Fezziwig, The Ghost of Christmas Present
Emily Case – Understudy

Creative Team

Andrew Phoenix – Co-creator, Director, Set and Puppet Designer
Kate Braidwood – Co-creator, Assistant Director, Mask and Sound Designer
Peter Balkwill – Dramaturgical Collaborator
Jessica Hickman – Devising Collaborator and Props Designer
The Singer and the Songwriter (Rachel Garcia and Thu Tran) – Composers/Musicians
Becca Jorgensen* – Stage Manager and Sound Operator
Emily Case – Assistant Stage Manager
Hina Nishioka – Lighting Designer
T. Erin Gruber Projection Designer and Scenic Illustrator
Emily Trepanier – Assistant Projection Designer
Hannah Case and Hannah Ockenden – Costume Designers
Christache Ross – Character Illustrator
Carole Klemm and Laura Shepard – Scenic Painters
John Nobori – Audio Engineer

A WONDERHEADS Christmas Carol is approx. 70 minutes long with no intermission. Theatrical fog/haze and flashing lights are occasionally used in this production.

*The participation of these Artists is arranged by permission of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association under the provisions of the Dance Opera Theatre Policy (DOT).

The Belfry Theatre is a member of the Professional Association of Canadian Theatres and engages professional Artists who are members of the Canadian Actors’ Equity Association under the terms of the jointly negotiated Canadian Theatre Agreement.

This production of A WONDERHEADS Christmas Carol
is generously sponsored by



…from the Artistic Director

I saw A WONDERHEADS Christmas Carol three years ago—and I fell in love with it—!

I confess, when I realized that it was nonverbal, I couldn’t imagine how they could possibly tell the story. So much of Dickens’ novella is filled with complicated ideas and
images. But not only do the WONDERHEADS succeed brilliantly in conveying the story through movement—they have also made some changes that, frankly, improve it—!

And then there are those “wonder-ful heads”—! and puppets—! and playfulness—! And an overflowing compassion that fills our hearts with joy—!

Victoria is a richer community since The WONDERHEADS became a localcompany—and I’m thrilled to welcome them to the Belfry stage—!

Wishing you all the blessings of the season—

Michael Shamata

…from the Executive Director

Welcome! It is such a pleasure to share with you this beautiful story performed with such exceptional craft by the WONDERHEADS.

When we look around the theatre tonight, we see many young people enraptured. I see the enchantment in their eyes, their minds racing, as they piece together the world of the Christmas Carol, and it reminds me once again why I love the theatre. I am delighted that the Belfry has the steadfast support of generous theatre patrons, volunteers, and donors such as yourselves so together we can share this magic.

All the best.

Isaac Thomas

…from the Directors

WONDERHEADS is a physical theatre company specializing in mask performance, puppetry, and wordless visual storytelling. What in the jingle bells does that mean? And is it not downright daft to tell the story of A Christmas Carol without a lick of dialogue, given Dickens’ well-earned place as one of history’s most revered wordsmiths?

A little, probably.

However, working without words, we have found, galvanizes us to poke and prod at the universal heart of a matter. And we believe that it is what lies beyond Dickens’ words that gives his tale the fortitude of fruitcake. At its heart, A Christmas Carol is the story of our most profound human undertaking: the practice of empathy and compassion. What a joy it is to watch Scrooge rediscover his humanity! And what a delightful way to take a moment to confer with our own. We hope that our take on this story may inch us all a little further along on that most human of expeditions — or, at the very least, make you grin during this season of jingly joy.

We are grateful to the Belfry for inviting us to bring our work to their beautiful stage, grateful to you all for joining us, and we wish you all a very merry Bah Humbug!

– Andrew Phoenix & Kate Braidwood (The Heads)

If you enjoyed the music in today’s performance:
“In the Bleak Midwinter” by The Singer and the Songwriter features songs from A WONDERHEADS Christmas Carol and more! The album is available for purchase in the lobby and is streaming online. www.thesingerandthesongwriter.com


Andrew Phoenix – Co-creator, Director, Set and Puppet Designer

Andrew (he/him) is a theatre creator, actor, director, teacher, producer, builder, designer, and Co-Founding Artistic Director of WONDERHEADS Theatre. Motivated by a passion for collaborative theatre-making, he completed his BFA at Texas State University before relocating to Northern California to attend the Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre. At Dell’Arte, he earned his MFA in Ensemble Based Theatre and discovered his love for mask performance. He worked across a range of roles in acting and set carpentry until 2009 when he teamed up with Kate Braidwood to create Grim and Fischer, marking the inception of WONDERHEADS. The company has since produced five award-winning productions that tour to performing arts centres and festivals throughout Canada, the US, and beyond. When not on the road with WONDERHEADS, Andrew can often be seen walking his dog Charlie through the streets of Fernwood.

Kate Braidwood – Co-creator, Assistant Director, Mask Designer, Sound Designer, and Cast (Ebenezer Scrooge)

Kate (she/her) is a theatre deviser, performer, director, mask maker, sound designer, teacher, producer, and Co-Founding Artistic Director of WONDERHEADS Theatre. Kate holds an MFA in Ensemble-Based Physical Theatre from the Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre and a BFA in Acting from the University of Victoria. In 2009 she co-founded WONDERHEADS with Andrew Phoenix and she is a lead contributor to the company’s devising process, as well as a principal performer and the company’s mask maker and sound designer. With WONDERHEADS she has created and toured five productions throughout North America: Grim and Fischer, LOON, The Middle of Everywhere, The Wilds, and A WONDERHEADS Christmas Carol.

Peter Balkwill – Dramaturgical Collaborator

Pete is one of the founding co-artistic directors of the Old Trout Puppet Workshop in Calgary. He is also the founder and co-education/artistic director of the Canadian Academy of Mask and Puppetry. A recent addition to all of this is his appointment as Assistant Professor of Drama at the School for Creative and Performing Arts at the University of Calgary. He has known the WONDERHEADS since their early work emerging out of Blue Lake and can recall bellowing at Kate in 3rd-year movement class at UVic where he utilized the immortal words of Kaz – “just go like bloody hell!”

Jessica Hickman – Devising Collaborator, Props Designer, and Cast (Marley, Fred, Tiny Tim, Belle, The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come)

Jessica Hickman lives in Esquimalt, BC and is a director, choreographer, teacher, performer, and puppet maker. In 2019, Jessica was honoured to perform and collaborate with the Heads for the premiere of AWCC and has been touring with this gorgeous show ever since! Jessica is the co-artistic director of Open Pit Theatre: Busted Up: A Yukon Story (Belfry Spark Festival), Trophy Hunt (Victoria Fringe), and Radio Silence (Intrepid). You may have seen her choreography here at the Belfry in A Christmas Carol, Puttin’ On the Ritz, and Mom’s the Word. Jessica is a proud CCPA alumni/faculty member and will be directing Anne of Green Gables at the McPherson this spring. www.jessicahickman.net

Sarah Robertson – Cast (Coroner, Mrs. Cratchit, Mrs. Fezziwig, The Ghost of Christmas Past)

Sarah Robertson is a multidisciplinary performer with a background in theatre, dance, mask, and clown. A graduate of Rosebud School of the Arts and a protégée of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Mentorship Program, her past credits include Every Brilliant Thing (Rosebud/Burnt Thicket Theatre), Radio Silence (Open Pit Theatre), The Skin of Our Teeth; The Miracle Worker; The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (Rosebud Theatre), Proof (Leonard’s Corner Productions), Dr. Frankenbean’s Halloween and other science demos (TELUS SPARK Science Centre). This is her third WONDERHEADS Christmas Carol, and she considers herself downright lucky to be in on the magic!

Pedro M. Siqueira – Cast (Bob Cratchit, Mr. Fezziwig, The Ghost of Christmas Present)

Pedro M. Siqueira is a Brazilian actor, musician, dancer, and producer currently based in Victoria, BC. He has been working on and off camera as an actor, and he feels very honoured to be able to work with the WONDERHEADS again. Latest artistic theatre credits include New Earth Bandits (SNAFU), Rebel Rhythm (Theatre SKAM), Good Night Desdemona, Good Morning Juliet (Blue Bridge) and Fado, The Saddest Music in the World (Puente Theatre and Fire Hall). Instagram: @pedro.msiqueira

The Singer and the Songwriter – Composers/Musicians

The Singer and The Songwriter is the musical duo of queer-mixed-race-Mexican-American vocalist/songwriter/poet Rachel Garcia, and Vietnamese-American guitarist/songwriter Thu Tran. Their multi-cultural backgrounds bring depth and diversity to the rich tradition of American folk music. Since 2009, they’ve released 3 critically acclaimed albums, performed hundreds of shows across the US, and had their music placed in television and commercials. In 2022, they were named finalists at the prestigious Kerrville Folk Festival’s New Folk Song Competition, as well as the 21st Annual NewSong Competition in Asheville, NC. They currently live in the California Bay Area.

Becca Jorgensen – Stage Manager and Sound Operator

Becca is a Vancouver Island-born and raised Indo-Canadian Marathoner. As a Stage Manager, Becca has supported teams across Canada including The National Arts Centre, Theatre Calgary, The Shaw Festival, and Pacific Opera Victoria. She is overjoyed to be creating and working with the Belfry Theatre for her 7th Season. Becca is a graduate of the University of Victoria and is most proud of her dog Larry.

Emily Case – Cast (Understudy), Assistant Stage Manager

Emily Case (she/her) is a Vancouver-based actor who graduated from Studio 58 mid-pandemic. She has been performing since her wee years in shows such as Like It Or Not (Zoey), Urinetown: The Musical (Little Sally), Concord Floral (Bobby James), and Anonymous (Calista). Since graduating, she performed her original one-woman show Curiosity at last year’s Victoria Fringe Festival as part of The Sci-Fi Sampler. She is so excited to be working with such talented people and to be expanding her knowledge of physical theatre and assistant stage management.

Hina Nishioka – Lighting Designer

Hina is a lighting designer based in the lower mainland of BC (the ancestral and unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples). Originally from Japan, she enjoys exploring projects with a variety of cultural backgrounds. Her selected lighting design credits include Yaga (Touchstone Theatre), Blue Stockings (Studio 58), and Kwê (Jeanette Kotowich). Her most recent assistant lighting design credits are As You Like It and Julius Caesar (Bard on the Beach 2023) and East Van Panto: Little Mermaid (Theatre Replacement). She holds a BFA in theatre (2020) from the University of Victoria. More information about her work is found at her website https://hinalighting.com/.

T. Erin Gruber – Projection Designer and Scenic Illustrator

T. Erin Gruber is an award-winning set, lighting, costume, and projected media designer. She works professionally across Canada and her work has been toured and exhibited nationally and internationally. She is a member of the board of directors of the Associated Designers of Canada and is currently an instructor at the University of Victoria. Award-winning projects: Métis Mutt (One Little Indian Productions, Sterling Award for Outstanding Production), The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Citadel Theatre and RMTC, Sterling Award for Lighting Design). Category E (Production Design, Maggie Tree Collective, Sterling Awards for Lighting and Projected Media Design). Online at: eringruber.com

Emily Trepanier – Assistant Projection Designer

Emily Trepanier is a recent graduate of the University of Victoria’s Phoenix Theatre where she focused in theatrical lighting design and technical theatre. For the Phoenix: The Waste Land, Lighting Designer; Love and Information, Assistant Lighting Designer; and The Sound of a Voice, Lighting and Set Designer (MFA project). Other recent credits include Vigil, Assistant Lighting Designer (Belfry Theatre); The Birds, Assistant Lighting Designer (Pacific Opera Victoria); The Addams Family, Lighting Designer (Shawnigan Lake School); It’s Just Black Hair, Lighting Designer (University of Victoria). She is thrilled to be working with the WONDERHEADS and hopes you enjoy this magical show.

Hannah Case – Costume Designer

Hannah is a designer and illustrator based in Vancouver, BC. She has designed costumes for Zee Zee Theatre, Touchstone Theatre, Ruby Slipper Theatre, and Outpost 31. She enjoys telling tales of the spooky and supernatural and is thankful for the chance to help spin this timeless story with the WONDERHEADS!

Hannah Ockenden – Costume Designer

Hannah is very happy to be back working with the delightful team that makes up WONDERHEADS again this year. As a multidisciplinary artist, Hannah has had the eye-opening joy of working in many settings and countries. Some costuming highlights over the years include several seasons for The Greater Victoria Shakespeare Festival, Radio Silence for Open Pit Theatre, working with students on several productions at The Canadian College of Performing Arts, and most recently The Funeral Plot with Bragi Theatre. She hopes you enjoy this show as much as she always enjoys working on it!

Christache Ross – Character Illustrator (Cratchit family portrait, Locket, Letters)

Christache is an artist, an actor, and a teacher. With a background in theatre, he has a special love for collaborating on creative projects that combine visual art with highly aesthetic performing artists like the WONDERHEADS. He lives in Vancouver with his partner and 3 cats. Online at www.christache.com

Miserly businessman Ebenezer SCROOGE cherishes money above all else. Despite the efforts of his employee Bob CRATCHIT and his nephew FRED, Scrooge has no time for kindness, generosity, or the humbug of Christmas. However, on this fateful Christmas Eve Scrooge is visited by the spirit of Jacob MARLEY, his former business partner. Marley’s spirit warns Scrooge that he will be haunted three more times during the night and insists that Scrooge must change his coldhearted ways if he wishes to avoid Marley’s dark fate. THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST appears in Marley’s wake and transports Scrooge into the memories of his youth, from his unhappy childhood to his later joyful apprenticeship with Mr. and Mrs. FEZZIWIG, and his one tender chance at love with the enchanting BELLE before greed overtakes him. The second apparition, THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PRESENT, offers Scrooge a window into the holiday camaraderie he shuns, and a warm celebration in the Cratchit’s home despite poverty and the heartbreaking frailty of the Cratchit’s son TINY TIM. The final apparition, THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS YET TO COME, shows Scrooge a devastating future in which Scrooge will at last be powerless, eternally chained, and unable to change fate. Scrooge awakens on Christmas morning a new man intent on embracing his chance to celebrate the season, and to joyously engage in the world around him in the spirit of love, compassion, and gratitude.

Find out more about the WONDERHEADS at www.WONDERHEADS.com


Carolyn Moon – Stage Manager and Lighting Designer
Jason King – Projection Designer
Theodore R. Sherman – Set/Lighting Designer and Scenic Painter
Andrew Phoenix – Cast (Bob Cratchit, Mr. Fezziwig, The Ghost of Christmas Present, The Ghost of Christmas Past)

WONDERHEADS gratefully acknowledges the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, the BC Arts Council, the CRD Arts & Culture Support Service, Intrepid Theatre, Impulse Theatre, and the Belfry Theatre in the development of this production.

About the Belfry

The Belfry Theatre is on the land of the Lək̓ʷəŋən People, known today as the Esquimalt and Songhees Nations. The Lək̓ʷəŋən people have been keepers of this land for millennia and we offer our respect and gratitude for our uninvited presence on their territory.

These lands are within the disputed Douglas Treaties territories, treaties that were negotiated verbally, signed to blank pieces of paper by the Indigenous leaders and then had text added by the colonial government. The colonial perspective on the treaty is one of a sale of land, while the Indigenous perspective is a sharing of territory.

The Songhees are members of the Te’mexw Treaty Association seeking a modern treaty with the Crown on their rights, territory and self-government.

The Belfry Theatre is a registered Canadian charity, 11921 5549 RR0001.

The Belfry Theatre is a member of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce, Destination Greater Victoria, and the Professional Arts Alliance of Greater Victoria.

President – Alison Watt
Vice President – Gillian Wood
Secretary – Mikaila Mauro
Treasurer – Kathy Veldhoen
Past President – Richard Brownsey

Cathi Charles Wherry
Dr. Joan McArthur-Blair
Kini McDonald
Daniela Pinto
Joni Steinman
Stephen Tax

Honorary Board of Directors
Chair Emeritus – Patrick Stewart
Sherri Bird
Barbara Greeniaus
Robert Johnston Q.C.
John Keay
Joan Snowden
Dr. Brian Winsby
Michael Ziegler

Castor Angus – Box Office Clerk
Kate Barry – Development Officer
Alison Bendall – FOH Supervisor & Box Office Clerk
Claire Cacheux – Box Office Clerk
Matty Cervantes – Manager of Community & Artistic Connections
Helena Descoteau – Box Office Supervisor
Mark Dusseault – Director of Marketing & Communications
Linda Findlay – Head of Wardrobe
Mike Ford – Director of Production & Operations
Ian Gibson – Audience Services Manager
Keith Houghton – Head Technician & Systems Administrator
Valerie Houle – Producer
Nora Kidston – Interim Front of House Manager
Carole Klemm – Head Scenic Artist
Jeff Kulak – Graphic Designer
Jeremy MacLeod – Technical Director
Patricia O’Brien – Director of Finance
Peter Pokorny – Head of Props & Scenic Carpenter
Dale Pudwell – Master Carpenter
Sophia Radford – Box Office Clerk
Michael Shamata – Artistic Director
Susan Stevenson – Director of Development
Isaac Thomas – Executive Director
Cian Waldron – Box Office Clerk
Deborah Williams – Associate Artist & Flame Facilitator
Celena Cook – Custodial Celena’s Cleaning Co

B4Play Host – Gregor Craigie
Photographers – David Cooper, Emily Cooper, Jo-Ann Richards, Peter Pokorny, and Don Craig
Belfry 101 Instructor – Dave Morris
Belfry 101 Instructor – Nicole Malcolm
Venue Technician – Hilary Britton-Foster
Lighting Crew – Mariam Dumitra, Leigh Robinson, and Andrew Shephard

Thank you to the Community Connectors – Ariel Reyes, Fiona Bramble, Katherine Ross, Nicola Watts, Debra Sheets, Tania Betiku, Thembelihle Moyo, Olvie Li, Carmen Rodriguez, Jess Barton, Cassidy Villebrun-Buracas, Alex Taylor-McCallum and Dahlila Isabelle Charlie.

Smartphones, Cameras, and Recording Devices
The use of cameras, smartphones or audio/visual recording equipment is prohibited. Please turn off all personal electronic devices prior to the performance. If you need to be contacted in an emergency, please leave your name and seat number with our House Manager.

Latecomers & Re-admission
The Director of each production designates moments in the show when the seating of latecomers will cause the least distraction for actors and audience members. Should you leave the theatre, our House Manager will not be able to reseat you until one of these breaks and may not be able to return you to your original seat, but you can watch the performance on the
monitor in our lobby.

Perfume and Cologne
Please refrain from using perfume and cologne when you come to the theatre. Some of our patrons are highly allergic to scents.

Food & Drinks
Only food or drinks that you purchase at the concession are permitted in the theatre.

Lost and Found
Please check with our House Manager if you have lost an item in the theatre.

Lobby Touchscreen
The TV monitor in our new lobby is a touchscreen device. By touching the screen, you can delve deeper into each production, learn about the artists who created the show, and much more.

Babes in Arms
The Belfry is proud to produce adult contemporary theatre. Most of our productions are not suitable for young children. Sorry, we do not admit babes in arms.