Reviews are by Donald Munro; NR = not reviewed.
Passion Play: Part 1 and 2: Fresno State presents Sara Ruhl’s darkly humorous play exploring how two eras attempt to stage the Passion of Christ. (Opens Friday, Dec. 2)
Peter and the Starcatcher: StageWorks Fresno opens Rick Elice’s innovatively staged play providing a backstory for the character Peter Pan. (Opens Friday, Dec. 2)
The Wizard of Oz: Reedley’s River City Theatre Company opens the musical classic. (Opens Friday, Dec. 2)
A Christmas Story, the Musical: Good Company Players brings back last year’s popular holiday title. Through Jan. 8. (NR)
Disney’s Beauty and the Beast: Playhouse Merced offers the musical favorite. Through Dec. 11. (NR)
It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play: Good Company Players hits all the right marks in its sweet and nostalgic holiday production, which manages to deliver a double dose of nostalgia: It offers a recap of the classic holiday movie; and it harkens back to the era of radio dramas, when actors’ voices and ingenious sound effects were all that were needed to make a story come to life. An excellent ensemble cast conjures up a multitude of memorable characters (Max Debbas and Jennifer Goettsch have some stellar moments), and sound designer Kyle W. Jensen gets on an onstage chance to work his aural magic. Through Dec. 18.
White Christmas: College of the Sequoias presents the Irving Berlin musical based on the 1954 film. Through Dec. 4. (NR)
OPENING NEXT WEEK
A Christmas Carol: College of the Sequoias theater professor Chris Mangels brings a one-man version of the Dickens classic to the 2nd Space Theatre for a one-night benefit performance. (Plays Tuesday, Dec. 6, only)
A Deviant Court: CURTAIN 5 TheatreGROUP presents the original one-act play (along with “The Elephant in the Room”) at the Fresno Soap Co. (Opens Friday, Dec. 9)