Do you have a theater kid? And by theater kids, I don’t mean children that spontaneously break into Broadway song, or use jazz hands. I’m referring to those kids who really LOVE seeing a stage show. They collect playbills like bubble gum cards, name their pets after Tony Award winners, and prefer their parks with Shakespeare rather than swings.
But even if you don’t have a theater kid, December is the perfect month to introduce your offspring to the wonders of the stage. So many theater companies in our neck of the woods pull out all the stops for their productions during the holiday season. Colorful costumes, amazing dance numbers, traditional carols, and falling snow in the theater are just some of the things you can expect when you go to see a holiday play. It’s also the one time of the year where there is an over-abundance of family-friendly shows–so many in fact, it can be difficult to choose.
A few weeks ago we featured holiday dance picks with our Nutcracker Superlist, it seems only fitting we shine a spotlight on just a few of the many seasonal theater offerings happening right now.
When you think of quality theater for children and families you don’t have to look any further than Dallas Children’s Theater. This year’s seasonal play is a musical adaption of “Magic Tree House Merlin Mission #16 A Ghost Tale for Christmas Time” by Mary Pope Osborne. If you have elementary school aged kids you’re probably familiar with the Magic Tree House series. In ‘A Ghost Tale for Mr. Dickens’ Jack and Annie travel back to Victorian England via their magic tree house to help Charles Dickens overcome a bout of writer’s block. Besides great theater and an intimate setting (there are no bad seats), another perk of a show at the DCT are autographs with the characters after the performance. Bring your pen and get Jack and Annie to sign your program. will be on stage until Dec. 23.
Another page to stage offering is Denton Community Theatre’s production of ‘The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.’ The comedy tells the story of the six delinquent Herdman children who attend church for the first time and end up in the annual Christmas pageant where they tell the Christmas story in an unconventional way. See it at the Campus Theatre in Denton weekends through Dec. 16.
Celebrate the holiday season with Jubilee Theatre’s memory musical ‘The First Noel.’ The play takes us back to Harlem in 1985 and follows the story of Noel and her desire for Christmas in a house where holiday joy has been unwelcome for years. The score is infused with gospel, pop, and re-imagined holiday classics. The result is a modern sound with a nostalgic feel of yesterday. The family-friendly show has weekend performances through Dec. 23. Don’t wait to get tickets. Their holiday shows consistently sell out.
You can’t let the season go by without indulging with a classic. And never was there a more definitive holiday play than Dallas Theater Center’s annual production of ‘A Christmas Carol.’ The clever folks at DTC are always re-imagining the Dickens’ yuletide story to keep it fresh and entertaining and this year is no different. The traditional tale has everything you love about Christmas–singing, dancing, snow, beautiful lights, and new this year are not one, but two jingly Ghosts of Christmas Present. The duo steals the show with their antics. It also features a super scary ghost of Marley. My 13-year-old absolutely loved him–it was her favorite part–but he might be too much for the tinies so they might want to sit this one out. Catch Scrooge at his finest at the Wyly Theatre through Dec. 30.
Speaking of the tinies,’Winter Wonderland’ at Geppetto’s Marionette Theater is the perfect for little theatergoers who aren’t quite ready for prime time. The musical variety puppet show is fast-paced, includes lots of audience participation including sing-a-longs, and it even snows on the audience. But the best thing about this show is that it’s only an hour long. The perfect length for short attention spans. You can experience ‘Winter Wonderland’ on select days through Dec. 30.
For a complete list of all the fun happening this season, check out Art&Seek’s Holiday Events Theme.