A Christmas Carol (Through Dec 24 at the Wyly Theatre) Tickets. Charles Dickens’ classic tale of greed and redemption graces the stage every year courtesy of the Dallas Theater Center, but this is the first time the DTC will present a completely new version inside the Wyly Theatre, complete with flying advice-giving ghosts and special effects to mimic the soft fall of snow. Directed by Kevin Moriarty and choreographed by Joel Ferrell, the cast will regale us with the story of how old Ebenezer Scrooge’s heart of stone softens as he’s offered a look at his past, present, and future.
The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess (Through Dec 22 at the Winspear Opera House) Tickets. George and Ira Gershwin premiered this sprawling opera, based on the novel and subsequent play by DuBose Heyward, in 1935. It was ambitious, clocking in at four hours and blending several different musical styles. The original, rarely produced in full, was richly detailed and inventive. It was also tough to sell. This new adaptation, which won several Tony Awards, was stripped down to its essentials by playwright Suzan Lori-Parks, composer Diedre L. Murray, and director Diane Paulus. The action centers around the fictional Catfish Row, a tenement house inhabited by freed slaves in 1920s Charleston, South Carolina, where the down-on-her-luck Bess takes up with the crippled beggar Porgy despite varying impending disasters.
Black Nativity (Through Dec 22 at the Bishop Arts Theatre Center) Tickets. This inspirational Christmas production is the creation of acclaimed poet Langston Hughes, a driving force behind the artistic movement of the Harlem Renaissance during the 1920s and `30s. The performance, an interpretation of the Biblical story of Jesus’ birth with an all-black cast, consists of spoken word, pantomime, gospel songs, and folk spirituals.
Santaland Diaries (Through Dec 29 at WaterTower Theatre) Tickets. Back before David Sedaris became David Sedaris the ridiculously famous humorist, he worked, briefly, as an elf in a Macy’s department store. His experience, expanded and exaggerated for laughs in his essay “Santaland Diaries,” earned him his first stint on NPR and a brush with fame that turned into a successful career. As for that essay, it’s now a one-man play and an offbeat holiday tradition that appeals to both our better angels and our inner Grinch.
Oral Fixation (Dec. 16 at the Winspear Opera House) Tickets. The third season of this storytelling series has found a new home at the Winspear Opera House. The AT&T PAC’s black box space will allow for more seating and walk-up ticket sales, creating more opportunities for everyone to brush up on their voyeuristic instincts. This month’s program is entitled “When In Rome,” and it features stories about following the flow of things in new or adventurous situations.