I am pretty down on Christmas theater. I am not alone in this. I fully understand the seasonal cash grab and I don't begrudge companies any amount of pandering to the what-do-I-do-while-my-family's-in-town crowd; that being said, I really have no interest in sitting through any of it. (Bah humbug, my heart is two sizes two small, etc.) Fortunately, there are some really, really solid non-holiday offerings buried amid the Christmas glut.
Surfacing, Holcombe Waller
A show about art and activism from one of the best vocalists in town. I've got a reasonably in-depth interview with Waller about his new show of "sung storytelling" right over here. (Related: I can't stop listening to this song, and the video prompted my question about Waller's use of humor in his work.) It's a one-weekend-only kinda deal. Tickets!
My Mind Is Like An Open Meadow, Erin Leddy/Hand2Mouth
Erin Leddy's solo show, based on the recorded memoirs of her grandmother. I called it one of the high points of last year's Fertile Ground festival; it went on to win five Drammy awards, including best production. It's no doubt changed as the company toured the show over the past year. I'm looking forward to seeing it again. Tickets!
The Shame Company, The 3rd Floor
For laughing! The newest show from Portland's longest-running sketch comedy troupe. Mercury calendar dude Bobby "Fatboy" Roberts is in it; at various points he (1) wears a unitard and (2) impersonates a kitty. There is also a recurring bit called "What If Jordy Had Snakes For Arms?" It is the greatest. Tickets!