Organized chronologically, from opening date
Global Rhythms: Human Rhythm Project
Concert series dedicated to American tap and contemporary percussive arts companies showcases rhythms from around the world, featuring Step Afrika, Ensemble Espanol Spanish Dance Theater, the Mexican Folkloric Dance Company of Chicago, Sones de Mexico and Chicago Mayfair Academy of Fine Arts. Performance line-up varies each night. Half the proceeds benefit over 50 Chicago non-profits through the Thanks4Giving program. Harris Theater, 205 E. Randolph, (312)334-7777. November 26, 8pm; November 27, 7pm. $15-$55.
Thirsty: Improv Drinking Party
Christmas comes early for the drinkers and actors of the Improv Drinking Party. Each show is crafted from audience suggestions, featuring new drinking games and songs. Apollo Theater, 2540 N. Lincoln, (773)935-6100. Fridays and Saturdays through December 17 (no show November 25 and 26), 10:30pm. $15.
Oops! A Britney Holiday at ComedySportz
Oops! I Christmassed Again: A Britney Spears Christmas Carol is back for its second smash year. ComedySportz gives a Charles Dickens classic a Britney Spears send-up. Has Britney changed her ways thanks to a midnight visit from Ghosts of Pop Music…in the form of Madonna, Lady Gaga, and Justin Bieber? Complete with singing, dancing, and Lindsay Lohan. ComedySportz Theatre, 929 W. Belmont, (773)549-8080, midnight. $10. Fridays through December 30.
A Christmas Carol
Charles Dickens’ classic tale adapted by Tom Creamer have audiences looking forward to the “Bah Humbugs,” the arrival of the ghosts, the music and dancing and Scrooge’s joyful discovery of life and love. Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn, (312)443-3800. Through December 31.
A Klingon Christmas Carol
Commedia Beauregard continues its translated tales with Dickens’ holiday classic in the Klingon language of “Star Trek,” with English subtitles for those not fluent. Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln, (773)404-7336. November 25-December 31, 7:30pm, 2:30 pm Sundays. $32.
It’s A Wonderful Life: Live at the Biograph
American Blues Theater performs “It’s A Wonderful Life” for its seventh year. Set as a 1940s radio broadcast based on Frank Capra’s original film, the show features real commercial breaks and live Foley sound effects. Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln, (773)871-3000. Through December 31, Thursdays-Sundays. $25-$50.
Dysfunctional Holiday Revue
Second City spins the holidays according to the company’s famed improvisational style with a sprig of holiday mischief. Scenes with ensemble members include an uneven girlfriend-boyfriend gift exchange and couples therapy with Mary and Joseph. Second City, 1616 N. Wells, (312)337-3992. Through January 1.
Amahl and the Night Visitors
Chamber Opera Chicago closes its 2011 season with its sixth annual presentation of Gian Carlo Menotti’s “Amahl and the Night Visitors.” Sung in English, the three kings’ one-act Christmas classic features Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater and a children’s chorus. Cindy Pritzker Auditorium at Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State, (312)951-7944. December 3 and 4, 3pm. $25 ($20 students, $10 children).
The Nutracker by Salt Creek Ballet
Salt Creek Ballet returns to Paramount Theatre for this dreamy holiday tale, featuring sixty-five local dancers. Paramount Theatre, 23 E. Galena, Aurora, (630)896-6666. December 3, 1pm and 5pm. $32 adult, $25 children.
A Christmas Carol at Paramount
The musical returns for two days this holiday season. Paramount Theatre, 23 E. Galena, Aurora, (630)896-6666. December 8, 10am; December 9, 10am and 7pm. $20-$37 adult, $14-$26 children.
The ballet holiday special turns American with Robert Joffrey’s rendition, complete with Tchaikovsky’s original score performed by a live orchestra. Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Congress, (312)922-2110. December 9-27.
“That’s Weird, Grandma” Holiday Show
Barrel of Monkeys’ holiday edition of “That’s Weird, Grandma” is a light and fun celebration of the holidays as well as the cold, cold weather. Skits include “Santa’s Mean Day” when Santa realizes he must put himself on the naughty list, “Thanksgiving” which explores an awkward family get together, and “The Crazy Reindeer”about when Bob the Reindeer gets laid off and learns a lesson about professionalism at work. Also on the roster are two classic BOM skits “The Snowmen from Pluto” featuring a 80s rock ballad theme song, and “The Time We had a Snowball Fight” about the snowball fight to end all snowball fights. Finally, “Witch and Santa Clause” will be reprised from this summer’s “That’s Weird, Abuelita” performances. All stories are created by 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders from Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Park District. Barrel of Monkeys (BOM) performs its holiday edition of “That’s Weird, Grandma” on Monday December 19, December 26 and January 2 at 8pm at the Neo-Futurarium, 5153 N. Ashland Ave. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children under 12. For tickets, reservations or information call (312)409-1954 or visit barrelofmonkeys.org.