The Very Best Of NYC Comedy/Variety (November 2009)

The Klezmer Nutcracker, An Intimate Evening with Lily Tomlin, and more!

The Vital Theatre Company presents a revival of the holiday classic The Klezmer Nutcracker Dec. 5 through Jan. 3. Based on the award-winning book The Golden Dreydl by Ellen Kushner, The Klezmer Nutcracker tells the story of Sara, who is miserable at the family Chanukah party. But when mysterious Tante Miriam arrives with the gift of a Golden Dreydl, everything changes.The Dreydl is an enchanted princess in disguise and whirls Sara away on an exciting adventure through a magical world. A delightful spin on the traditional story of "The Nutcracker," that weaves together threads of Jewish folklore with fantasy, humor and holiday cheer.

The Madonna—as in the Virgin Mary (or Lady MaMa, in some circles)—announces her first U.S. holiday tour in over 2000 years starting right here in NYC at the Laurie Beechman Theater Dec. 6. Over 2000 years ago in the little hillside town of Bethlehem a miraculous birth occurred. You might think you know the real story, but you don’t. Hear it straight from the ladies lips in Madonna’s Christmas Celebration, a musical retelling of the birth and life of the young Jesus Christ. This inspiring holiday show features original music, plus so-wrong- it’s-right parodies of holiday favorites and Top 40 hits by the likes of The Black Eyed Peas, Bey- once, Lady GaGa, Katy Perry, Rihanna and the more-famous Madonna.

Dixon Place presents An Intimate Evening with Lily Tomlin a special one-night-only event on Nov. 23. Award-winning actress and comedienne LilyTomlin will serve up her timeless characters, including the beloved Ernestine and Edith Ann, offering you an experience filled with comical insights and wildly witty observations about the human condition! The performance, hosted by fellow out lesbian comic Reno, is a benefit for Dixon Place and kicks off the official Grand Opening festivities of their new state-of-the-art, almost-completed theater at 161A Chrystie Street. Stay after the performance to join Lily and Reno for a dessert reception.

Catch the Off-Broadway premiere of Sister’s Christmas Catechism: The Mystery of the Magi’s Gold Nov. 27 through Jan. 3 at Sofia’s downstairs cabaret theatre. It’s “CSI Bethle- hem” in this holiday mystery extravaganza as Sister Maripat Donovon takes on the query that has intrigued historians throughout the ages – whatever happened to the Magi’s gold? Retelling the story of the nativity, as only Sister can, she poses the burning question, "We know what happened to the myrrh and the frankincense – Mary used them as a sort of potpourri. They were in a barn after all. But who was the culprit who made off with the gold coins and left Mary, Joseph and the infant Jesus in that lousy stable without any chance to upgrade to a suite?" Employing her own scientific tools, assisted by a local choir as well as audience members, Sister creates a living nativity unlike any seen before.

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