Holiday spirits brighten Milwaukee arts
It almost wouldn’t be Christmas in Milwaukee without the annual Milwaukee Rep production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol at the Pabst Theater. This year marks the 36th rendition of Ebenezer Scrooge’s Yuletide redemption, and the Rep will again use the adaptation crafted by Edward Morgan and director Joseph Hanreddy. The musical runs Dec. 2 to 24, and tickets are $45 or $25 for value performances and $65 or $35 at peak performances, with reduced student and senior prices at all shows. For exact listings and showtimes, visit the Rep’s website or call (414) 224-9490.
If you just want a little extra Ebenezer, In Tandem Theatre presents the third (and final, if their website is to be believed) annual staging of Scrooge in Rouge this weekend. The show depicts a troupe of actors set to put on a musical version of Dickens’ classic tale, up until all but three of them come down with food poisoning. Luckily for us, the show must go on, no matter how hilarious the costume and role swapping gets. The show runs Dec. 2 through 31, at 7:30 p.m. weeknights, 8 p.m. Fridays, 4 and 8 p.m. Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets are $22 weeknights and matinees and $26 Fridays and Saturdays; call (414) 271-1371 or visit In Tandem’s website to order.
Annie is Sunset Playhouse’s holiday sweetheart in her Sunset premiere. The story of an orphaned girl dreaming of finding her real parents features such standards as “It’s a Hard Knock Life,” “You’re Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile” and “Tomorrow.” The musical runs Dec. 1 to 31, with shows at 7:30 p.m. weekdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets are $22 and $16 for seniors and students; call (262) 782-4430 or visit the Sunset online box office to order.
The Alchemist Theatre opens another of their interactive shows this weekend, this one a Christmas murder mystery mash-up: Who Killed the Ghost of Christmas Past? Audience members are expected to participate, so don’t plan on staying in your seats too long. The show runs Dec. 1 to 17, and tickets are $15; order online at the Alchemist’s website.
Jeff Tyzik, a hit in 2008 and 2010, returns to conduct another Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra’s Holiday Pops Spectacular Friday. The concert also features the Milwaukee Symphony Chorus, Milwaukee Children’s Choir’s Jubilate chorus and Milwaukee Youth Chorale, and the Alleluia Ringers of Concordia University performing a collection of carols and sing-alongs. Shows are 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $22 to $99 and can be purchased online or at (414) 291-7605.
The Prometheus Trio — Stefanie Jacob (piano), Timothy Klabunde (violin) and Scott Tisdel (cello) — will perform Monday, Dec. 5 at 7:30 p.m. and Tuesday, Dec. 6 at 11 a.m. (Note the unusual Tuesday start time.) On the program are George Onslow’s Trio No. 9 in G major, Frank Bridge’s Phantasie Trio and Dvorak’s “Dumky” Trio. Tickets are $22; call (414) 276-5760 to order.
The Pedrito Martinez Group comes to Latino Arts, Inc. this week. Pedrito himself leads his ensemble in soulful Latin jazz with a Cuban and African edge, and has recorded and toured with artists including Bruce Springsteen, Ray Charles and Eddie Palmieri. The concert is at 7:30 p.m. Friday, and student matinees are offered at 10:30 a.m. Thursday and Friday. Matinee tickets are $12 for adults and $8 for students; the Friday night show is $25, $20 for seniors and $15 for students. Order tickets at their online box office.
Cabaret duo Beckie Menzie and Tom Michael treat the Wilson Center for the Arts to a Home for the Holidays performance that reimagines jazz classics, Broadway show tunes and contemporary pop. The concert begins at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, and tickets are $28. Call (262) 781-9520 or visit their online box office to order.
Break out your kids’ pink nightmares: It’s time for Festival City Symphony’s annual Holiday Pajama Jamboree. The show offers a collection of holiday favorites, a sing-along and a special presentation by the Vocal Arts Academy of Milwaukee’s Apprentice Level Choir, a group of third- to sixth-grade singers. The concert is Wednesday, Nov. 30, at 7 p.m. at the Marcus Center. Admission is free, but a nonperishable food donation is requested.
The Coalition of Photographic Arts (CoPA) opens their fifth annual juried exhibition this weekend, presenting 43 works by 30 artists from Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan and Minnesota. Works were selected by this year’s juror, Catherine Edelman, who curates her own gallery in Chicago. The CoPA exhibition runs Dec. 2 through Jan. 21 at the Walker’s Point Center for the Arts, and Edelman will present select awards and host a talk at a reception Dec. 9, from 5 to 9 p.m.
This week, Latino Arts, Inc. opens Following Palindrome Series #2: Conversion, an exhibition by Pamela Diaz Martinez. The exhibition’s works are drawn or painted diptychs that offer parallel images of the same object, slightly yet unmistakably different from each other. The exhibition opens Friday, Dec. 2, with a reception from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., and runs through March 30.
The Historic Third Ward Association hosts Christmas in the Ward Dec. 2 and 3. Events include a holiday open house at the Marshall Building with over 15 shops and galleries available to the public, a tree lighting ceremony Friday at 5:30 p.m. with the Trinity Irish Dancers, food and drink tasting and shopping throughout the Third Ward._
American Players Theatre: The Gift of the Magi, through Dec. 18
Fireside Theatre: A Fireside Christmas, through Dec. 22
First Stage: Junie B in Jingle Bells Batman Smells, through Dec. 24
Marcus Center: A Kodachrome Christmas starring John McGivern, through Dec. 31
Boulevard Theatre: The Importance of Being Earnest, through Dec. 3