A Christmas Carol Mean-spirited Ebenezer Scrooge is haunted by three ghosts in this annual Holiday classic. Meadow Brook Theatre, Rochester. Various dates and times, through Dec. 24. $30-$38. 248-377-3300. www.mbttheatre.com.
Downhearted Blues A staged reading of a new play by local playwright Ann E. Eskridge and directed by Janet Cleveland. T. Andrew Aston’s Edge of the Brook Series at Meadow Brook Theatre, Rochester Hills. Mon., Dec. 12. $5. 248-377-3300. www.heartlande.com.
The Full Monty Six good buddies come up with a desperate plan to get their lives back together. The Whiting, Flint. Thu.-Fri., Dec. 8-9 only. $29-$59. (810) 237-7333. www.thewhiting.com.
The Glass Menagerie Tennessee Williams’ poetic and complex drama about a restless soul stuck as the breadwinner for a family abandoned by his father. Purple Rose Theatre Company, Chelsea. Wed.-Sun., through Dec. 17. $20-$35. 734-433-7673. www.purplerosetheatre.org.
The Great American Egg Nog Festival A holiday comedy showcase featuring two one acts: “The Santaland Diaries” and “Jesus Cake, Fat Pants and the Theory of Relativity.” Blackbird Theatre, Ann Arbor. Thu.-Sat., through Dec. 10. $18. 734-332-3848. www.blackbirdtheatre.net.
Heart Attack Eight women and posters of Marilyn Monroe come to the rescue of an unfunny, down-on-his-luck stand-up comedian. Detroit Repertory Theatre, Detroit. Thu.-Sun., through Dec. 30, plus a special New Year’s Eve performance. $20. 313-868-1347. www.detroitreptheatre.com.
Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol Marley finds himself facing the Record Keeper in the afterlife and is offered one chance to save himself from a wretched eternity A Michigan premiere by Performance Network Theatre, Ann Arbor. Thu.-Sun., through Dec. 24. $20-$34.50. 734-663-0681. www.performancenetwork.org.
Julius Caesar Can the murder of a king ever be justified, Marc Antony asks? The Hilberry Theatre, Detroit. Plays in repertory through Dec. 17. $20-$28. 313-577-2972. www.hilberry.com.
Little Women A remarkable new musical based on the classic novel by Louisa May Alcott. Fisher Theatre, Detroit. Tue.-Sun., Dec. 6-18 & Dec. 27-Dec. 1. $32.50-$72.50. 313-872-1000. www.nederlanderdetroit.com.
Menopause The Musical A joyful musical parody about four women who have nothing in common except a certain shared experience! Gem Theatre, Detroit. Every Tue.-Sun. $39.50. 313-963-9800. www.gemtheatre.com.
The Radio City Christmas Spectacular The beloved Radio City Rockettes return for their ninth season of holiday cheer for the entire family. The fabulous Fox Theatre, Detroit. Tue.-Sun., through Dec. 24. $20.50-$65.50. 313-471-6611. www.olympiaentertainment.com.
Side by Side by Sondheim A tribute to the sophistication, wit, insight, heart and genius of composer-lyricist Stephen Sondheim. Jewish Ensemble Theatre Company at the DeRoy Theatre on the campus of the Jewish Community Center, West Bloomfield. Previews Dec. 13, 14, 15 & 17; runs Wed., Thu., Sat. & Sun., Dec. 17 – Jan. 8. $27-$37. 248-788-2900. www.jettheatre.org.
Sister’s Christmas Catechism The Good Sister returns and employs techniques from her favorite TV show, “Forensic Files,” to discover the whereabouts of the Magi’s gold. Century Theatre, Detroit. Tue.-Sun., through Dec. 31. $34.50-$39.50. 313-963-9800. www.gemtheatre.com.
Snowtunes Maureen McGovern emcees an evening of music and entertainment by local and national artists as a benefit for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Detroit Concert for a Cure at the historic Baldwin Theatre, Royal Oak. Mon., Dec. 12. $25. 248-541-6430. www.stagecrafters.org.
Stones In His Pockets Two down-and-out Irish lads become extras in a mega-Hollywood film that takes over their tiny County Kerry town. BoarsHead Theatre, Lansing. Previews Nov. 23 & 25, then runs Wed.-Sun., through Dec. 18. $21-$33. 517-484-7805. www.boarshead.org.
Sweet Bird of Youth Tennessee Williams’ shocking tale of scandal and betrayal. The Hilberry Theatre, Detroit. Plays in repertory through Jan. 28, 2006. $20-$28. 313-577-2972. www.hilberry.com.
A Visit with Thomas Jefferson A remarkable one-man show for children and adults alike that takes modern-day audiences on a trip through time to visit with one of the country’s most fascinating founders. BoarsHead Theater, Lansing. Sat., Dec. 10 & 17 only. $10/adults, $7/youth. 517-484-7805. www.boarshead.org.
Cheers, Tears and Beers Three one-acts or scenes from contemporary plays. Lansing Community College Performing Arts Department at the Old central Building, room 232, Lansing. Fri.-Sat., Dec. 16-17. Free admission. 517-483-1488. www.lcc.edu.
Pride and Prejudice A mother attempts to marry her daughters off, but what happens when one of them despises the man picked out for her? Bonstelle Theatre, Detroit. Fri.-Sat., Dec. 9-18. $14. (313) 577-2960. www.theatre.wayne.edu.
That Championship Season A penetrating study of time lost. Hilberry Studio Theatre, Detroit. Thu.-Sat., through Dec. 10. $10. 313-577-2972. www.theatre.wayne.edu
All in the Timing Part 2 An all new collection of comedic scenes designed to eradicate the holiday blues. Riverwalk Theatre, Lansing. Dec. 16-18 & 29-31. $10. 517-482-5700. www.riverwalktheatre.com. For adults only.
Comic Potential Star-crossed, mistached lovers of the next millennium face an uncertain future where everything has changed except human nature. Farmington Players, Farmington Hills. Thu.-Sat., through Dec. 10. $13. 248-553-2955. www.farmingtonplayers.org.
Mrs. Bob Cratchit’s Wilde Christmas Binge The classic Dickens’ tale gets a comedic twist when The Ghost of Christmas Past’s magic keeps failing and Mrs. Cratchit flies into a rage. Whole Art Theater, Kalamazoo. Fri.-Sat., through Dec. 17. $20. 269-345-PLAY. www.wholeart.org.
The Retreat from Moscow A couple still years for fulfillment after many years of marriage. Peppermint Creek Theatre Company at the Woldumar Nature Center Barn Theatre, Lansing. Thu.-Sun., through Dec. 10. $10. 517-927-3016. www.peppermintcreek.org.
Slab A director tries to breathe new life into theatre by having the lead character actually die on stage. Flint City Theatre at The Good Beans Cafe, Flint. Thu.-Sat., through Dec. 10. $5. 810-341-6912. www.flintcitytheatre.com.
Theater for Young Audiences:
After the Beanstalk A funny and engaging continuation of the “Jack and the Beanstalk” classic tale. A Second City Children’s Theater production at The Second City, Novi. Every Sat. morning, through Dec. 17. $10. 248-348-4448. www.secondcity.com.
A Christmas Carol An original family-friendly adaptation of the Dickens’ classic. Flint Youth Theatre at Elgood Theater, Flint. Fri.-Sat., through Dec. 10, plus Sat., Dec. 17. $12/adults, $10 children. 810-237-1530. www.flintyouththeatre.com.
Cinderella The Rodgers and Hammerstein musical brings this enchanting tale to life. Kalamazoo Civic Theatre at the Civic Auditorium, Kalamazoo. Fri.-Sun., through Dec. 11, plus Thu., Dec. 1. $15-$21/adults; $8-$10/children. 269-343-1313. www.kazoocivic.com.
The Last Christmas of Ebenezer Scrooge A sequel to the beloved classic that asks the question, “So what happened in the years AFTER the miser reformed?” A staged reading by Flint Youth Theatre’s Off the Press Series at Elgood Theater, Flint. Sun., Dec. 11. $5. 810-237-1530. www.flintyouththeatre.com.
Maureen Schiffman and her Puppet Pal Coco The popular performer returns to entertain children pre-K through grade 5. A Saturday Series for Young Audiences at Performance Network Theatre, Ann Arbor. Sat., Dec. 17 only. $10/adults, $7 children. 734-663-0681. www.performancenetwork.org.
The Nutcracker A non-ballet version of the Holiday favorite. Stagecrafters’ Youth Theatre at the Baldwin Theatre, Royal Oak. Thu.-Sun., Dec. 8-11. $9/adults, $6/children. 248-541-6430. www.stagecrafters.org.
Pinocchio The world-renowned tale is brought to the here and now by local playwright Jeff Duncan and sprinkled with local color and Old World charm. Eastern Michigan University Theatre at Quirk Theatre, Ypsilanti. Fri. & Sat., through Dec. 10. $15/adult, $6 children 12 and under. 734-487-1221. www.emich.edu/cta.
Sleeping Beauty A comical adaptation of the popular musical. Riverwalk Theatre, Lansing. Fri.-Sun., through Dec. 11. $7/adults; $5/children. 517-482-5700. www.riverwalktheatre.com.
Improvisation/Late Night/Interactive/Dinner Theater:
The Christma-Hana-Kwanzaa Holiday Spectacular A variety comedy show that lampoons and lambastes the holidays with sketches, dance and improv. Improv Inferno, Ann Arbor. Fri. & Sat. throughout December (excl. Christmas Eve and NY Eve). $10. 734-214-7080. www.improvinferno.com. Recommended for adults only; not recommended for fuddy-duddies.
Dear Santa Holiday hilarity and havoc rein in Santa’s workshop when supplu shortages at the North Pole threaten the holiday. StarBrite Productions at Miles World Italian Restaurant, Fraser. Fri. & Sat., through Dec. 16; Sunday matinees available for private parties. $39.95, includes three-course dinner and the show. 586-415-4500. www.starbriteprod.com.
Improv Inferno A new comedy lounge in Downtown Ann Arbor with five nights of fun: “The Wild Card” and “Super Fun Karaoke” hit the stage on Wednesday nights; Thursday hosts “Catfight” and “High Octane”; Friday & Saturday feature “The Damnation Game,” and at Midnight, “The X Show”; and the week closes on Sunday with “Get Up! Stand Up!” and “The Sweet Spot with Eye Candy.” $5-$10. 734-214-7080. www.improvinferno.com.
In iPod We Trust Second City’s 26th review explores political and societal elements from Detroit, Novi and national perspectives. The Second City, Novi. Every Wed.-Sun. $15-$20. 248-348-4448. www.secondcity.com.
It’s All in the Words” The fast-paced cabaret-style musical romp with songstress Kate Brennan and music director Harvey reed returns to entertain lovers of great music. Cuisine Restaurant, Detroit. Fridays, through Dec. 16. $45, includes three-course dinner and show. 313-872-5110. www.cuisinedetroit.com.
The Mechanicals A late night, interactive comedy adapted from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” that looks at a motley group of actors who perform “the play within a play” in Shakespeare’s comedy. Do What I Want Productions at The Mosh Pit at Performance Network Theatre, Ann Arbor. $10. 734-663-0681. www.performancenetwork.org.
Monday Night @ Planet Ant The Ant’s resident improvisational troupe, the Improv Colony, is joined each week by a Guest Team that performs the evening’s first act. Planet Ant, Hamtramck. Every Monday. $5. 313-365-4948. www.planetant.com.
The Reality Buffet Short plays selected by the audience are based upon the lives, perspectives and experiences of Detroit’s acting and improv communities. Motoprism at the Improv Inferno, Ann Arbor. Every Sunday. $10. 734-214-7080. www.improvinferno.com.
2005: A Christmas ODDyssey They came from space with a goal, an act of treachery so unbelievable that no one could stop them. Their mission? To kidnap Santa! Random Acts on the Old Road Murder Mystery Dinner Train, Charlotte. Every Saturday, through Dec. 31. $57.95 includes dinner and show. 888-726-8277. www.random-acts.net.
Wassailfest Ring in the holidays at the legendary Winter Court of England’s Queen Elizabeth I with jugglers, musicians, magicians, dancers and an authentic Renaissance feast! The Players and the Renaissance Dance Company of Detroit at The Historic Players’ Playhouse, Detroit. Sat., Dec. 10 only. $60, includes dinner and show. 313-259-3385. www.theplayers.info.