Onstage alternatives for this holiday season


‘It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas’ at Cumming Playhouse

This musical adaptation of the classic film “Miracle on 34th Street” comes from the Bozarts Little Theater group. It originated in the mind of Meredith Willson, whose serious musical cred includes “The Music Man” and “The Unsinkable Molly Brown.”

It’s the story of a department store St. Nick who turns New York City on its ear by claiming to be the real deal.

Jerry Harlow handles the producing and directing, while Bob Russell oversees the music.

8 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays; 3 p.m. Sundays. Today-Sunday; Thursday-Dec. 18. $20; $15, 60 and older and students 18 and younger. Cumming Playhouse, 101 School St., Cumming. 770-781-9178, www.playhouse cumming.com.


‘A Tuna Christmas’ at Theatre in the Square

Last year’s popular production returns. William S. Murphey and Bryan Mercer take the stage as a pair of radio announcers who portray the twisted denizens of Tuna, Texas.

More than 20 characters help tell this non-politically correct story, requiring Murphey and Mercer to don drag at times. The residents have a puzzler on their hands. It’s up to them to solve the mystery of the Christmas Phantom.

“A Tuna Christmas” is recommended for ages 16 and older, because of the colorful vocabulary in the script.

Tuesdays-Sundays. Through Jan. 2. No shows Dec. 25 or Jan. 1. $28-$35. Theatre in the Square, 11 Whitlock Ave., Marietta. 770-422-8369, www.theatreinthe square.com.


‘Deck Them Halls Y’all’ at Buckhead Theatre

Actor Leslie Jordan, the self-proclaimed Southern Baptist sissy, spikes the holiday eggnog with this adult-themed stage show. Jordan, who won an Emmy in 2006 for his guest spot on “Will & Grace,” presents a one-man show featuring a barrage of whacked-out characters. From a pre-op transgendered lesbian entering a Christmas drag king contest to a 10-year-old boy who is in love with an elaborate choir robe, Jordan breaks holiday conventions like a snow globe smashing on linoleum.

8 p.m. Saturday. $36.10-$85.70. Buckhead Theatre, 3110 Roswell Road, Atlanta. 1-800-745-3000, www.ticketmaster.com.


‘The Best Christmas Pageant Ever’ at Balzer Theatre at Herren’s

Synchronicity Theatre helps this time-honored tale come back to the stage. Justin Anderson directs the play about the six uncontrollable Herdman siblings. Armed with a scorching reputation, the kids school a church congregation on the real meaning of Christmas. This family-friendly production is based on the Barbara Robinson book, a popular seasonal tome found in elementary school libraries.

Tuesdays- Sundays. Saturday-Jan. 2. No shows Dec. 25-26. $15-$18. Balzer Theatre at Herren’s, 84 Luckie St. N.W., Atlanta. 404-484-8636, www.synchrotheatre.com.

Jon Waterhouse, for the AJC