Wassail out the Wahzoo with Three Holiday Plays

A Christmas Carol, Greetings! and Dick Whittington deck the stages.

It sounds oogly-woogly, but Greetings!, directed by Terry Dobson, wraps its out-there ideas in broad humor. Bryant has the tough job of clicking back and forth between the roles of the brother and the David Niven-like spirit. Make either too silly and the effect is lost, but Bryant's just right at finding the balance and not playing Mickey with any obvious I Am Sam choices. The whole cast is terrific.

At the opening-day performance, a member of a Baptist group who'd come to the play walked out before it was over and complained to management that he was offended. Hey, One Thirty, you're doing something right.


Theatre Britain up in Plano produces a traditional English "panto" every Christmas and this year's Dick Whittington by Jackie Mellor-Guin, directed by Sue Birch, is a hoot. Pantos offer an old-fashioned fairy tale for the kiddos with plenty of double entendres for the adults to giggle at.

Jonathan Brooks as Jacob Marley's Ghost in DTC's A Christmas Carol.
Karen Almond
Jonathan Brooks as Jacob Marley's Ghost in DTC's A Christmas Carol.

Details

A Christmas Carol continues through December 24 at Kalita Humphreys Theater. Call 214-880-0202. Greetings! continues through December 17 (matinees only) at the Bath House Cultural Center. Call 214-670-8749. Dick Whittington continues through December 28 at the Cox Building Playhouse, Plano. Call 972-490-4202.

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In the drag role of "Dame Overeasy," James Chandler is utterly hilarious, flouncing around in big petticoats and uttering 90 minutes of mild naughties ("I thought Dick looked a little droopy this morning"). Jad B. Saxton is a cutie in the trouser role as the title character, a plucky runaway with a cat (Jean-Luc Hester) as a best friend. Kate Rutledge slithers around as the sexy-evil Queen Rat, whose rat-pack trio of comic rodents is nicely played by Brandon Wilhelm, Chris Sykes and Caitlin Mills. Michael Speck serves as narrator.

Sing-alongs, the appearance of a ghost ("He's right behind you!") and plenty of audience interaction (watch out for Dame Overeasy, the big flirt) are all part of a panto, so play along. This show's so British, they even sell Maltesers and chicken-flavored "crisps" at intermission.

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