Holiday Happenings

Whether you’re celebrating with the Messiah or the Chipmunks, we’ve got seasonal shows for every style

Illustrations (4) by Peter Hoey


December 16 to 20

The Classic Nutcracker

Ballet Minnesota’s satisfying take is true to the story yet still inventive—this is the troupe, after all, that has collaborated with a singing park ranger and a rock group called Mock Duck.

December 6 to 13

Welcome Christmas

After 33 years of holiday shows, no one gets you properly seasoned like the VocalEssence chorus, featuring new works and its annual carol contest.

December 3 to 27

Black Nativity: A Season for Change

Get ready, people, with TU Dance, Penumbra Theatre, and the best gospel singers in town.

December 5 to 22

Hershel and the Hannukah Goblins

This family story of goblins obstructing Hannukah, staged by the Minnesota Jewish Theatre, recently won an Ivey Award for its creative puppeteering.



December 10 to 23

S. Gunter Klaus and the Story Before

Award-winning director Jon Ferguson premieres his latest epic—nothing less than the richly imagined origin story of Santa Claus.

December 17 to 20

All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914

Theatre Latte Da’s unlikely holiday hit returns to the Pantages Theatre, with Cantus singing the remarkable story of enemies celebrating together.

December 17 to 20

Christmas in Elizabethan England

The Rose Ensemble journeys back to when caroling began, with soprano lines to make your hair stand on end (in a good way).

December 5 to 13

What Sweeter Music: Christmas with The Singers

Stephen Paulus and other Minnesota composers get their due in this sixth-season performance by the Singers, the descendants of Dale Warland’s renowned chorus.



December 5

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy’s Wild and Swingin’ Holiday Party

The musical stars of Swingers shake, rattle, and roll the Pantages Theatre with a big-band take on Yuletide classics.

December 11 to 13


Members of the Gay Men’s Chorus unleash their inner children with an evening of nostalgic holiday tunes and carols.

December 3 to 20

Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol

Jim Lichtscheidl returns to the Park Square Theatre with his one-man show telling Dickens’s story from the ghostly viewpoint of Scrooge’s sidekick.

December 17 to 27

Cirque Dreams Holidaze

If Elf was a musical featuring acrobats, it might look like this show at Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, a sensory overload of mind-bending sets and body-bending feats.



December 9 to 31

Nutcracker (Not So Suite)

This cracked version of the ballet solidified the legend of the Ballet of the Dolls as campy deconstructionists, and it’s no less fun two decades later.

November 27 to December 13

Miss Richfield 1981’s Annual Holiday Show

The beauty, er, drag queen never fails to find new topical humor for this goodhearted, cabaret-style comedy show.

December 3 to 20


Just when you thought there were no new holiday concepts, Bedlam Theatre presents this Marxist holiday musical about the fur trade—as dinner theater.

Through January 30

Brett Favre’s Christmas Spectacular: The Immaculate Interception

The sketch-comedy masterminds huddle up for an evening of holiday routines (no, Favre will not be appearing).