Critics’ picks: theater



CHRISTMAS TIME Sarah Pfisterer and Rick Hilsabeck have been added as guest stars to this musical production, which will feature a cast of 150 children and nearly 40 adults performing dance and choral numbers, including the tap-dancing “Parade of the Wooden Soldiers,’’ the “Teddy Bears’ Nutcracker,’’ “Santa’s Workshop,’’ and the “Living Nativity.’’ Reagle Music Theatre of Greater Boston, Robinson Theatre, Waltham. Dec. 3-11. 781-891-5600,

MRS. GRINCHLEY’S CHRISTMAS CAROL Ryan Landry returns to one of his most indelible roles: Hermione P. Grinchley, the picture of free-floating malevolence, an emerald-skinned meanie with a frizzy riot of hair and a nose so large it practically warrants its own topographical map. During the course of an eventful, tuneful, raunchy evening that pilfers plot from Dickens and draws character inspiration from Dr. Seuss, Mrs. Grinchley will learn - yes - the true meaning of Christmas. But it will take a series of harrowing visitations from - yes - the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future. Dec. 3-18. Machine, Boston.


A CHRISTMAS CAROL David Coffee will play old Ebenezer for the 18th year, and he will be joined by a promising cast that includes the stellar likes of Leigh Barrett (doubling as Mrs. Cratchit and the Ghost of Christmas Past) and Timothy John Smith (as the Ghost of Christmas Present). Dec. 2-23. North Shore Music Theatre, Beverly. 978-232-7200,

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A CHRISTMAS CAROL Elements Theatre Company is presenting a dinner-theater version of “A Christmas Carol,’’ complete with a “traditional English banquet,’’ live music, and carols performed by singers from the Gloriae Dei Cantores choir. Presented by Elements Theatre Company. At Paraclete House, Rock Harbor, Orleans. Dec. 2-4, 8-11. (The Dec. 11 performance is a matinee; no dinner). 508-240-2400,

Now playing

CAPTORS Evan M. Wiener’s uneven but eventually absorbing new drama, directed by Peter DuBois, depicts the capture of one of history’s monsters, Adolf Eichmann, by Israeli agents. What ensues is a game of cat and mouse (or, more precisely, cat and rat) in which Michael Cristofer’s portrait of Eichmann inspires our revulsion, as it must. Through Dec. 11. Presented by Huntington Theatre Company. Boston University Theatre. 617-266-0800,

THE BROTHER/SISTER PLAYS Tarell Alvin McCraney’s trilogy - “In the Red and Brown Water,’’ “The Brothers Size,’’ and “Marcus; Or the Secret of Sweet’’ - comes to vivid life in these fine and stirring productions. In a top-notch cast, Hampton Fluker stands out with extraordinary performances in all three plays. Running in repertory through Dec. 3. Presented by Company One. Plaza Theatre, Boston Center for the Arts, Boston. 617-933-8600,

THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW When you’re Ryan Landry, nothing succeeds like excess, which makes him just about perfect in the role of Dr. Frank N. Furter, the pansexual transvestite-mad scientist-alien who debauches a pair of young innocents. Through Jan. 27. Presented by Oberon and the Gold Dust Orphans. Oberon, Cambridge. 866-811-4111,


A CHRISTMAS CAROL Brian McEleney gets his grump on as Scrooge, fresh on the heels of his amusing turns as a prissy journalist and a beady-eyed mobster in Trinity Rep’s “His Girl Friday.’’ Through Dec. 30. Trinity Repertory Company, Providence. 401-351-4242,


PETER PAN The tale of the boy who would not grow up gets a thrilling new production in a 1,300-seat tent, mixing low-tech puppetry with jaw-dropping scenic projections and acrobatic flying effects to tell J.M. Barrie’s classic story in the round. Through Dec. 30. Presented by threesixty° entertainment. City Hall Plaza. 888-772-6849,

HAMLET Director Fred Sullivan Jr. and actor Tony Estrella return to a play for which they teamed up in 1997, when they created a production that put the Gamm Theatre and Estrella on the map. This stunning and powerful “Hamlet’’ celebrates Shakespeare’s rich language while making his characters, and their struggles, extraordinarily accessible. Through Dec. 18. Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre, Pawtucket, R.I. 401-723-4266, TERRY BYRNE