Curtain’s up on Yuletide magic! Holiday shows are as much of a tradition as eggnog, elf on a shelf, and roasting chestnuts on an open fire (who actually does that anyway?). From long-established classics to kitschy new takes on festive cheer, you’ll have lots of low-stress, high-fun options while visiting family (or having family visit) in Oregon’s Washington County.
No theater savant wouldn’t dare miss the Nutcracker Ballet. Get your fill of sugarplum fairies, dew drops, and mouse kings, with a whimsical production by the Portland Festival Ballet (December 22-24, varying times at the Arts & Communication Magnet Academy Performing Arts Center, $12-$30). Artistic director John Magnus is a seasoned Nutcracker veteran. The New York Times called his past productions “glorious and sweetly inventive.” For other local productions of The Nutcracker, see our event listings.
Many families cap the season with a family viewing of It’s a Wonderful Life. Oregon’s Washington County takes our fandom to a whole new level with It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play (December 14-15 at H.A.R.T. Theatre) and the slapstick adaptation, It’s a (Somewhat) Wonderful Life (December 12-December 23 at the Venetian Theatre).
Keep cozy in the plush velvet poinsettia-red theater chairs with these additional Christmas shows:
• Plaid Tidings (December 13-22) – Presented by Broadway Rose Theatre Company
• The Best Christmas Pageant Ever (December 13-15) – Presented by H.A.R.T. Theatre
• Annie (December 13-15) – Presented by Theatre in the Grove
• Winter Dreams (December 13) – Presented by Hillsboro Symphony Orchestra
• The Spirit of Christmas for Young & Old (December 14) – presented by Voices for the Performing Arts
• Oregon Mandolin Orchestra (December 20) – Presented by Oregon Mandolin Orchestra
• Handel’s Messiah (December 20) – Presented by Portland Chamber Orchestra