A family theater excursion offers the perfect excuse to dress up for a night on the town and gather some cherished holiday memories. Santa, Mrs. Claus, Scrooge, Clara and the Nutcracker, and even Charlie Brown are all in Chicago to share the spirit of the season with families.
No need to switch on that TV or press play on the iPad: Head to one these star-studded Chicago theater shows and see your favorite characters in action.
Tune out his grumpy "Bah, humbugs!" Somehow grouchy Mr. Scrooge always finds the spirit of Christmas at the Goodman Theatre's cherished annual production of "A Christmas Carol." Your heart is guaranteed to grow three sizes as you enjoy this world-class play, complete with elaborate costumes and nostalgic scenery.
Through December 31 at Goodman Theatre (170 N. Dearborn Street).
You'll find Clara and her magical Nutcracker in Wicker Park at the House Theatre's creative reinvention of the beloved tale. Both funny and heartwarming, this rendition focuses on Clara's journey to save her family, reeling from the wartime death of her brother by the hands of the Rat King. It will remind everyone in your family about the real reason for the season.
Through December 30; House Theatre of Chicago at Chopin Theatre (1543 W. Division Street).
Join Charlie Brown as he sets off to discover the true meaning of Christmas. After a pageant production with Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts crew, everyone's favorite bald little boy will bring some holiday spirit your way, too, no matter the scrawny Christmas tree.
Through January 8, 2017; Emerald City Theatre Company at Broadway Playhouse (Water Tower Place, 175 E. Chestnut Street).
Mrs. Claus finally steals the show in this short and sweet one-hour musical adaptation at the Beverly Arts Center, created with kids ages 2–12 in mind. Little ones are invited to help merry Mrs. Claus and the elves as they try to find Santa's missing list just in time for Christmas.
Through December 23; Chicago Kids Company at Beverly Arts Center (2407 W. 111th Street).
If you're looking for Santa, join the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago Children's Choir and special guest vocalist Ashley Brown at this merry celebration featuring the songs of the season performed by the best musicians in the city. Arrangements both new and cherished will have you humming and singing along to the jingle bell beat.
Through December 23 at Chicago Symphony Center (220 S. Michigan Avenue).