Veteran actor and entertainer Tommy Steele returned to the London Palladium last night in a role with which he's become synonymous - Scrooge.

Scrooge - which was last at the Palladium in 2005, again starring Steele - tells Dickens' story of the miserly Ebenezer Scrooge who, after a night facing the ghosts of his past, present and his frightening future, is transformed, his Christmas spirit restored.

The score includes "I Hate Christmas", "It's Not My Fault", "I'll Begin Again" and "Better Life".

Joining steele in the principal cast are: Barry Howard as Jacob Marley, Sarah Earnshaw as the Ghost of Christmas Past and James Head as the Ghost of Christmas Present.

Getting in the early Christmas spirit last night were guests including Shirley Anne Field, Jeffrey Archer and X Factor's Melanie Masson...


Scrooge, which is written by Leslie Bricusse - whose other major musicals include Stop the World - I Want to Get Off, Pickwick and Doctor Dolittle - was originally a 1970 film starring Alec Guinness and Albert Finney. The show was famously staged in Birmingham in 1992 when Bricusse's long-time collaborator Anthony Newley took the title role.

Steele has played the title role more than any other actor over the years.

Completing the cast are: Craig Whitely, Leonie Heath, Halcro Johnston, Edward Handoll, Robbie Towns, Tessa Vale, Leon Kay, Anna McGarahan, Louisa Maxwell, Ian Caddick, Steven Sparling, Johnathan Dudley, Nikki Gerrard, Roisin Sullivan, Natalie Moore Williams and Kieron Harris.