Diversionary Theatre’s excellent “Legacy Revival Production” of The Santaland Diaries is a dark comedy for adults that takes shots at, while honoring, the Christmas season in equal measure. Adapted by Joe Mantello from a David Sedaris semi-autobiographical essay, an unemployed thirty something gay actor in the 1990’s, briefly referred to as David (Wil Bethmann), decides to become a seasonal department store elf at Macy’s.

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Adding something new to a classic story can make it appear fresh. New Village Arts Theatre’s family-friendly production of Around the World in 80 Days not only uses a 2008 script from Laura Eason, but also incorporates original songs from a local “pirate rock” band, The Shantyannes (their musical theatre debut).

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Comedy and romance make for an irresistible mixture in Lamb’s Players Theatre’s charming production of Ring Round the Moon. Staged by Producing Artistic Director, Robert Smyth, and Associate Artistic Director and director of Patron Services, Deborah Gilmour Smyth, the evening satisfies with smart laughs delivered by an excellent ensemble.

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There’s something especially appealing about watching an interpretation of a William Shakespeare show from a true devotee of the playwright. Over his extensive career, the Director of Professional Training for The Old Globe and University of San Diego Shiley Graduate Theatre Program, Jesse Perez, has acted/directed/choreographed different Shakespeare tragedies and comedies.

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Legendary feuds between prominent stars has probably existed for as long as theater has been performed. It’s not surprising when two notable stars of the stage and screen, who have wonderful chemistry, turn out to hate each other in real life.

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The Welk Resort Theatre has a reputation for putting on lighthearted Christmas musicals, including shows such as Plaid Tidings, Winter Wonderettes and the upcoming revue, Welkome Home for the Holidays!. This year the Escondido theatre company is celebrating Halloween, presenting a hilarious version of the musical comedy The Addams Family.

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