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MAKING SPIRITS BRIGHT (Act II Playhouse): 60-second review

Presented in variety-show style with skits, songs, and improv sessions, this show is downright funny.

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PLAID TIDINGS (Bucks County Playhouse): 60-second review

A budding 50s guy group that met an untimely end in an accident find themselves out of their heavenly digs and back on Earth – in front of a live audience.

Keith Conallen as Crumpet in Flashpoint’s THE SANTALAND DIAIRES (Photo credit: Courtesy of Flashpoint Theatre Company)

THE SANTALAND DIARIES (Flashpoint): The return of a hilarious holiday tradition

Flashpoint Theatre Company brings back its signature show for the holidays, David Sedaris’s THE SANTALAND DIARIES, for a ten-performance pre-Christmas run.

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“Musicians of Silence”: MUMMENSCHANZ returns to the Annenberg

MUMMENSCHANZ transform the ordinary into extraordinary using everyday objects and silent storytelling.

Matteo Scammell as the Beast in the Arden’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (Photo credit: Mark Garvin)

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (Arden): An innovative retelling of a favorite fairytale

Director Whit MacLaughlin employs both live actors and shadow puppets to convey both the darkness and magic of the popular story.

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THE SINCERITY PROJECT (Team Sunshine): Real bodies doing real things

THE SINCERITY PROJECT uses honest dialogue and candid storytelling to blend truth and creative license into a deeply resonant piece.

Kerry Kristine McElrone, Dylan Geringer, Emma Orr, Rick Fountas, Paul McElwee, and Jenna Kuerzi in CTC’s JAMES JOYCE’S THE DEAD (Photo credit: Joe del Tufo)

JAMES JOYCE’S THE DEAD (CTC): An immersive event in an Irish pub setting

The one-act musical adaptation of Joyce’s short story is presented as a memory play, told through narration and re-enactments.

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THIS IS THE WEEK THAT IS (1812): 60-second review

With references to Throwback Thursday, Snapchat, and that annoying five-second wait to skip a YouTube video, the show focuses our attention on the funny intricacies that make up our times.

David Howey and Beth Dixon in PTC’s OUTSIDE MULLINGAR (Photo credit: Mark Garvin)

OUTSIDE MULLINGAR (PTC): Land, loss, and love in rural Ireland

John Patrick Shanley’s rom-com charmer is a play about feelings, expressed with an Irish lilt by two generations of neighbors in the Emerald Isle

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Theater, dance, and circus for the price of a sandwich: NICE AND FRESH December

This month features circus heroes Almanac, Philadanco alum Lauren Putty White, a short by SmokeyScout artistic director Josh McIlvain, and the return of prodigal playwright John Rosenberg.

1. Brian Sanders JUNK Holiday Revue Special

Scratch Night provides a preview of a family-friendly holiday special from Brian Sanders’ JUNK

FringeArts’ December Scratch Night included a sneak peek of the 1.1 HOLIDAY REVUE SPECIAL, this year’s all-ages seasonal offering by Brian Sanders’ JUNK.

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HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS (Blend Theatrics): A sweet treat for the season

Holiday magic is alive and well at the Laurie Beechman Cabaret Theater.

Gigi Naglak, Bryan S Clark (as Horny Rudolph), and Gwen Rooker in a previous installment of Tribe of Fools’ annual holiday burlesque (Photo credit: Plate 3 Photography)

Tribe of Fools Gets Naughty with THE REVENGE OF HORNY RUDOLPH: A Holiday Burlesque Preview with Terry Brennan

Tribe of Fools’ popular holiday burlesque is back this year for one night only with its fifth ensemble-devised installment, THE REVENGE OF HORNY RUDOLPH.

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Opens this week, runs through 2028: THE SINCERITY PROJECT (Team Sunshine), a 24-year experiment

Can theater be sincere? What does it mean to reveal personal secrets onstage? Is truth a form of performance? Find out.

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KISS ME, KATE (Renaissance Music Theatre): Tom, Dick, or Harry would all call this a flop

KISS ME, KATE should bring comedy, heart, big production numbers, and a classic big finale. But Renaissance Music Theatre’s production is a few weeks of rehearsal away from capturing the…

Erlina Ortiz.

Dominicana Dreamin’: Erlina Ortiz on Latin American theater and her new play, MORIR SONYANDO

Power Street Theatre was founded in 2012 by two Latina Temple alums to showcase the talents of Latin American theater artists. It’s biggest production to date, MORIR SONYANDO, was part…

Philadelphia theater calendar

Philadelphia Theater Calendar: December 2014

January | February | March | April | May | June July | August | September | October | November | December Great Expectations. By Charles Dickens, adapted by Gale Childs Daly. October 23-December 14, 2014. Arden Theatre Company, 40 N. Second Street. ardentheatre.org. Mary Poppins. By Richard M. Sherman and…

Christopher Patrick Mullen as Merlyn and Susan McKey as Archimedes in ARTHUR AND THE TALE OF THE RED DRAGON at People’s Light (Photo caption: Mark Garvin)

ARTHUR AND THE TALE OF THE RED DRAGON: A MUSICAL PANTO (People’s Light): Coming of age in the Middle Ages

The family friendly holiday panto takes a wacky look at the growing pains of the future King Arthur as he faces the challenges of life, learning, and leadership.

Clare Mahoney and Peter DeLaurier in Lantern Theater Company's QED (Photo credit: Mark Garvin).

QED (Lantern) No doctorate in theoretical physics is required to enjoy this production

But you don’t have to be an egghead to enjoy this play. It’s a great show for non-physicists, a category that includes a whole lot of us.

Peter DeLaurier (with Clare Mahoney in the background) in Lantern Theater Company's QED (Photo credit: Mark Garvin).

QED (Lantern): A glowing tribute to a brilliant man

Peter DeLaurier reprises his role as physicist Richard Feynman in Lantern Theater Company’s remount of its 2006 hit.