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Holiday theater happenings

November 25, 2010|By Shayna Sobol, Special to the Los Angeles Times
  • The Radio City Rockettes at Grand Central Terminal in New York.
The Radio City Rockettes at Grand Central Terminal in New York. (Timothy A. Clary / AFP / Getty…)

The holidays are a time to reconnect with the familiar, time-honored characters of the season — Scrooge and the Ghost of Christmas Past, Santa and Rudolph, and David Sedaris' elf. Oh yeah, and Billy Joel. Whether you like musicals or drama or variety spectaculars, L.A. is in tune with the great stories that endure, and there is no shortage of holiday theater productions for the whole family.

Dickens UnScripted

Impro Theatre stages improvised parodies in the style of Charles Dickens, kick-started by suggestions from the audience and completely different at each outing. The Edye Second Space at the Broad, 1310 11th St., Santa Monica. Dec. 10-19. $40. (310) 434-3200. http://www.thebroadstage.com

The First Jo-el

Matt Walker directs the Troubadour Theater Company's version of the nativity story, set to music by piano man Billy Joel. Falcon Theatre, 4252 Riverside Drive, Burbank. Dec. 10-Jan. 16. $34.50-$57. (818) 955-8101. http://www.falcontheatre.com

A Christmas Carol

Hal Landon Jr. returns as the quintessential Scrooge in South Coast Repertory's 31st annual staging of the Dickens holiday classic. SCR founding artists Richard Doyle and Art Koustik reprise their roles as the Ghost of Christmas Past and Joe, respectively. John-David Keller directs. South Coast Repertory, Segerstrom Stage, 655 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. Dec. 3-26. $35-$60. (714) 708-5555. http://www.scr.org

The Santaland Diaries

The Blank Theatre Company presents Nicholas Brendon in the stage adaptation of David Sedaris' wickedly comic essay about working as a Christmas elf at Macy's. Michael Matthews directs. Stella Adler Theatre, 6773 Hollywood Blvd., second floor, Hollywood. Nov. 27-Dec. 19. $30. (323) 661-9827. http://www.theblank.com

Radio City Christmas Spectacular

The high-kicking precision-dancing Radio City Rockettes strut their way into the holiday season in a new large-scale family-friendly production, replete with an LED screen that transports audiences from a wintry landscape to Times Square to Santa's workshop, all while favorite numbers like "Parade of the Wooden Soldiers," "Living Nativity" and "Let Christmas Shine" are performed on stage. Honda Center, 2695 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim. Dec. 6-7. Nokia Theatre, 777 Chick Hearn Court, L.A. Dec. 9-12. $35-$89. (800) 745-3000. http://www.radiocitychristmas.com

Bob's Holiday Office Party

Rob Elk and Joe Keyes' irreverent holiday comedy, a portrait of small-town Americana, returns for its 15th year, with a few updates and surprises. Hudson Mainstage Theatre, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood. Dec. 3-19. $20-$25. (323) 960-7711. http://www.bobsofficeparty.com

Shirley Jones and Patrick Cassidy

The Oscar-winning star of stage, screen, TV and music and her son, a veteran of the Broadway stage, head a cast of 30 in Cabrillo Music Theatre's "2010 Holiday Spectacular," a show of seasonal music and dance. Cheryl Baxter directs and choreographs. Fred Kavli Theatre, Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. Dec. 21-24. $30-$76. (800) 745-3000. http://www.cabrillomusictheatre.com

The Eight: Reindeer Monologues

In Jeff Goode's dark, adults-only holiday comedy, scandal erupts at the North Pole when one of Santa's reindeer accuses him of sexual harassment. Chance Theater, 5552 E. La Palma Ave., Anaheim Hills. Nov. 30-Dec. 21. $22-$35. (714) 777-3033. http://www.chancetheater.com

La Virgen de Guadalupe, Dios Inantzin

Opera singer Suzanna Guzman heads the cast of more than 100 in Latino Theater Company's annual musical retelling of the story of the apparition of the Virgin Mary to the Indian peasant Juan Diego in the hills of Tepeyac. Adapted from Antonio Valeriano's "The Nican Mopohua" by Evelina Fernandez. Jose Luis Valenzuela directs. Presented in Spanish with English supertitles. Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, 555 W. Temple St., L.A. Dec. 9-10, 7:30 p.m. General admission is free. Reserved seats are $35. (866) 811-4111.

Yo Ho Ho! A Pirate's Christmas

The NoHo Arts Center Ensemble presents Scott DeTurk and James J. Mellon's family holiday musical. NoHo Arts Center, 11136 Magnolia Blvd., North Hollywood. Nov. 26-Dec. 23. $25. (818) 508-7101, Ext. 7.

Plaid Tidings

Stuart Ross directs his holiday revision of the hit musical "Forever Plaid," about a 1950s singing group that returns from the dead for a big gig packed with Christmas standards, including "Let It Snow" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas." The Old Globe, 1363 Old Globe Way, San Diego. Dec. 2-26. $35-$67. (619) 234-5623. http://www.theoldglobe.org

A Gallery Family Christmas

Artistic director Mark Torreso presents a family-friendly night of holiday storytelling and comic caroling. The Gallery Theatre, 3152 La Palma Ave., Suite G, Anaheim. Nov. 26-Dec. 19. $15. (714) 630-9870. http://www.thegallerytheatre.com

A Christmas Carol

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