By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
To see Tiny Tim's tale from a ghost's POV, check out Jacob Marley's Christmas Carol at Richardson's Labyrinth Theatre (972-231-1012, through December 15).
Contemporary Theatre of Dallas (214-828-0094) offers the romantic Maltby/Shire musical Closer Than Ever and, in the late-night slot, David Sedaris' bitter-funny R-rated monologue The Santaland Diaries (both December 5-28). Nye Cooper played to sellout crowds in Santaland in Addison for years but now brings the act to this Lower Greenville venue in a new staging by director Coy Covington.
The double bill at WaterTower Theatre (972-450-6232) starts with Beautiful Star: An Appalachian Nativity, November 28–December 21 on the Main Stage. Written by former DTC'er Preston Lane, it follows an Appalachian minister and his congregation as they re-enact the nativity with music. In the Studio Theatre (December 3-21) is the regional premiere of Steve Murray's This Wonderful Life, a solo show based on Capra's film about everyman George Bailey's existential crisis on Christmas Eve. Directed by Michael Serrecchia, it stars Greg White, who does an uncanny Jimmy Stewart impression.
Returning for a second time to 90-seat Theatre Too (214-871-3300) is the sexy Alan Ayckbourn romp Season's Greetings (November 28-December 14) about a raucous British family trying to enjoy the hols under the same roof. Emily Gray and Julie Painter give comedy turns well worth the price of admish.
Theatre Britain (972-490-4202) is back with Little Red Riding Hood, November 29-December 21 at the KD Studio Theatre. Suitable for kids (with a few wink-winks for grown-ups), the show includes elements of traditional British panto including sing-alongs, flying ghosts and a man in drag as Widow Twanky. Bonus: British sweets and "crisps" at the interval.
The silliness of Nuncrackers: The Christmas Musical returns to Richardson Theatre Centre (running now through December 14; 972-699-1130). The slapstick-prone "sisters" are putting on yet another show, this time on the convent's own cable station.