Charles Dickens made a huge contribution to the festive spirit as we think of it, and nowhere more so than in his tale A Christmas Carol.

By turns creepy and touching, the story has a timeless appeal on the page and transforms brilliantly for stage production, as has often been demonstrated.

Neil Bartlett, a one-time co-director of Pegasus, came up with his version during his days in charge of the Lyric, Hammersmith. It was scripted for a cast of nine, and it is hugely to the credit of Pegasus boss Jonathan Lloyd that he had managed to refashion it for performance by just four adult actors and one youngster – Joe Stokes at the performance I saw – as Tiny Tim and the Ghost of Christmas Future.

The production demands some quick changes of costume for the actors, who in three cases take on a multitude of roles.

The fourth, Richard Kidd, is seen only as Scrooge, whose transformation from miser to benefactor is depicted in the gripping story. Since the character is on the stage for virtually the whole time, this is an immensely challenging role. Kidd’s performance is a tour-de-force.

He is especially good in the scenes where he is subjected to various hauntings, guaranteed to put the wind up members of the audience. Ben Callon brings a winning appeal to his principal role as the much-put-upon clerk Bob Cratchit and also wrings the withers as Marley’s ghost.

From Phoebe Brown we see a splendid account of the Ghost of Christmas Past, while Anna Wheatley, as Mrs Cratchit, makes an important contribution to the picture of Victorian home life in which two ‘borrowed’ members of the audience are also involved.

A Christmas Carol continues at Pegasus until January 2 and provides an unmissable festive treat.