Theatre In Chicago's 2018 Holiday Show Round-Up
A popular holiday tradition for many folks in Chicagoland is attending a Christmas play. This year has more options than ever for theatre-goers, with an impressive variety of classic holiday plays as well as a few out-of-the-ordinary experiences for people who may treasure the unique over the tried-and-true. When it comes to seasonal theatre in Chicago, there is truly something for everyone. Here are just a few of the holiday plays you won't want to miss for the 2018 season. To see a complete list of the holiday plays, visit our Holiday Plays in Chicago page.
Swoon for the Ballet
For some families, no holiday season would be complete without attending "The Nutcracker." This classic Tchaikovsky story about a young girl and her unusual gift is on the calendar at several local theatres with very different spins on the classic:
If ballet isn't your favorite form of dance, you may want to check out the toe-tapping show, Tidings of Tap, performed by the Chicago Tap Theatre at North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, December 9, 2018. The show is all new this year, so even if you've seen it before, you'll want to plan to see it again.
- The annual production of The Nutcracker at The House Theatre of Chicago at Chopin Theatre, through December 30, 2018
- Great Russian Nutcracker at Rosemont Theatre, December 2, 2018
- Ballet Chicago's The Nutcracker at Athenaeum Theatre, December 7-15, 2018
- The Joffrey Ballet's Nutcracker at Auditorium Theatre, December 1-30, 2018
- The Governor's State University Center for Performing Arts version of The Nutcracker, December 8, 2018
- The Von Heidecke Chicago Festival Ballet's Nutcracker with live accompaniment with the New Philharmonic Orchestra at McAnnich Arts Center, December 15-16, 2018
Another timeless harbinger of the holidays is the Charles Dickens' tale of A Christmas Carol, about Ebenezer Scrooge and how he finds the Christmas spirit with the help of some other-worldly messengers. The Goodman Theatre is celebrating its 40th anniversary of presenting this holiday play with merry musical numbers and more. It runs through December 30, 2018.
Another Chicago take on this holiday classic is A Q Brother's Christmas Carol. This modern rendition takes theatre-goers on a musical journey with hip-hop, reggae, dubstep, and even rock ballads to put a lively twist that is sure to put the Christmas spirit in your heart. Get tickets for shows from November 20-December 30, 2018.
Holiday Ho-Hos and Ha-Has
You can also see A Christmas Carol at Metropolis Performing Arts Centre, November 29-December 24, 2018; and A Dickens Carol presented by the Oak Park Festival Theatre at Madison Street Theatre, December 14-30, 2018.
On the Radio
Holiday nostalgia can be found at the 16th annual American Blues Theater production of It's a Wonderful Life: Live in Chicago, running on Stage 773 from November 15, 2018-January 5, 2019. Take a trip to Bedford Falls through the sounds and sights of a live radio broadcast from the 1940s; be sure to stick around for milk and cookies, served by the cast after the show.
Other theaters in town also appreciate the radio show genre for the holidays. Check out these additional options for holiday radio fun:
Take a break from the stress of the season and have a good laugh with Second City, Chicago's premier comedy sketch and improvisational troupe. Some of the biggest names in comedy got their start with Second City, so you can celebrate the holidays and witness comic genius at the same time. Here are a few of the Christmas plays produced by Second City this year:
Other holiday comedy shows can be found in Chicago:
- The Good, the Bad and the Ugly Sweater - This no-holds-barred holiday roast runs from November 13-December 31, 2018, at Piper's Alley
- Holidazed and Confused Revue - Skits and songs are the hallmark of this annual show, running from November 29-December 23, 2018, at Paramount Theatre
- Nut-Cracking Holiday Revue - Running from December 22-31, 2018, The Metropolitan Performing Arts Centre is where you'll find classic comedy sketches and brand-new scenes to put a smile on your face.
Spread the Holiday Cheer
- A Snow Globe Kissmas - A Hallmark Christmas Movie Parody, at Piper's Alley, December 7-21, 2018
- David Sedaris' The Santaland Diaries, at Goodman Theatre, November 30-December 30, 2018
- It's Christmas, Goddamnit, at Annoyance Theatre, November 23-December 28, 2018
Twas The Night Before Christmas, by Emerald City Theatre at the Broadway Playhouse through December 30, 2018
- Hellcab, performed by The Agency Theater Collective at Raven Theatre, November 30-December 30, 2018
- EL Stories: Holiday Train, at the Greenhouse Theater Center, November 30-December 22, 2018
- Christmas Bingo: It's a Ho-Ho-Holy Night, at Royal George Theatre, November 23-December 30, 2018
This is only a sampling of the many holiday plays and musicals you can see at the theaters throughout Chicago area. If you need more ideas for family fun or more adult offerings, visit the Chicago Holiday Plays page for an extensive list of Christmas plays. Theatre in Chicago is your go-to source for live performance during the holiday season and throughout the year.
For a complete list of the holiday shows in Chicago go to our Holiday Plays In Chicago page.
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