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Spotlight on the holidays: Local stages are filled with holiday cheer

Local stage venues unwrap a bounty of festive treats both traditional and new.

December 02, 2013|By Lynne Heffley
  • Left to right: Frank Simons, David Allen Jones and Jenna Augen in "A Christmas Carol" at Grove Theater Center at GTC Burbank.
Left to right: Frank Simons, David Allen Jones and Jenna… (Courtesy of Dallas…)

It's that time of year when, once again, local stages light up with holiday-themed treats for audiences of varying ages. The festive offerings range from the soulful (a symphonic concert) to the intentionally ridiculous (anarchic clowning, a British-style panto), topped off, of course, by “The Nutcracker” and an assortment of “Christmas Carols.”

The shows:

Aladdin and His Winter Wish (Pasadena Playhouse, 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena). Bruce Vilanch plays Widow Twankey and Ben Vereen is the Genie in Lythgoe Family Productions' second annual holiday musical, presented British panto style with a cast whose stage and screen credits range from Nickelodeon to Broadway. (And there's a live pony, too.) Choreography by Spencer Liff (“So You Think You Can Dance”) and musical direction by Michael Orland (“American Idol”). For all ages. Gala opening, 7 p.m. Dec. 11. Runs 3 and 7 p.m. Thursday through Friday; 11 a.m., 3 and 7 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Sunday. Also 3 p.m. Dec. 24. Ends Dec. 29. $22 to $72. Premium seating additional. Children's “Golden Ticket” (includes an onstage experience during the show): $100. (626) 356-7529, www.pasadenaplayhouse.org.

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Alex Theatre Holiday Schedule (Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale). The historic Alex Theatre, closed since July for a multimillion-dollar expansion project, reopens for the holiday season. “Nutcracker Holiday Festival” (Pacific Ballet Dance Theatre): 7 p.m. on Dec. 1 only. $25 to $90. “The Nutcracker” (Los Angeles Ballet): 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7; 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8; $30 to $95. “Holiday Spectacular” (Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles): 3 and 8 p.m. Dec. 14; 3 p.m. Dec. 15. $25 to $75. “Christmas Concert” (Los Angeles Symphony): 8 p.m. Dec. 21. $25 to $75. “Taline, Friends & Santa, Armenian Christmas Show”: 5 p.m. Dec. 22. $20 to $60. “Anna in the World of Fairytales”: 7 p.m. Dec. 23. $30 to $50. (818) 243-2539, www.alextheatre.org.

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