Review: The Magic Fishbone, Red Rose Chain, Christchurch Mansion, Ipswich, until January 13.

Dickens and Red Rose, what a winning Christmas combination.

Writer and director Joanna Carrick’s adaptation of this lesser known tale is fantastic festive fun for little kids and big ones, like me, too.

When Alicia - the excellent Anna Doolan - isn’t looking after her countless siblings she’s turning countless creditors away from her feckless father’s door.

Enter magic fishbone Clyde; an amazing puppet crafted by the company’s Jimmy Grimes and sublimely voiced by Joel Johnson.

He would’ve stolen many other shows; but the writing, set design and songs coupled with the three-strong cast’s performances made for a beautifully balanced piece.

Hilarious and moving in equal measure, there are too many laugh out loud moments to mention. Scott Ellis - who, like Johnson, played multiple roles to perfection - provided more than his fair share of them.

The ideal Christmas gift; read more about the show and Jimmy Grimes online.

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