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North Shore Live Highlights

What do ogres and assassins, puppets and prom drama queens all have in common? These crafty characters will create wonderful worlds right before your eyes in this season’s array of sensational stage shows. Take your pick from rousing musicals, heart-stirring tales, and world-class ballet. The season greets with stories and songs that entertain and some to get you in the holiday spirit. Keep up with all the entertainment happenings on the North Shore



Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre, 721 Howard St., Evanston
Through Dec. 17, 2023
Hang on for the wild ride of this multiple Tony Award-winning theatrical tour-de-force. Writers Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman bend the rules of time and space in Assassins, a nightmarish roller coaster ride where notorious villains from different historical periods meet, interact, and inspire each other to harrowing acts. Explore the dark side of the American experience in the lives of nine individuals who assassinated or tried to assassinate the President of the United States from John Wilkes Booth to Lee Harvey Oswald in this disturbing, yet alarmingly funny tale.

The Prom

The Prom
Wirtz Center for the Performing Arts, Northwestern University
30 Arts Circle Dr., Evanston
Nov. 10–19, 2023
Four eccentric Broadway stars, desperate to stay relevant, seize on some trouble brewing about a small-town prom. It’s time to spotlight the issue…and themselves! Local parents want to keep the high school tradition on the straight and narrow — but when one student just wants to bring her girlfriend to the dance, everyone has a date with destiny. Can Broadway’s brassiest help them showcase how love will bring them all together? Winner of the Drama Desk Award for Best Musical, The Prom expertly captures the humor and heart of a classic musical comedy with a message that resonates with today’s audiences.

Manual Cinema's Christmas Carol

Manual Cinema’s Christmas Carol
Writers Theatre, 325 Tudor Ct., Glencoe
Nov. 16–Dec. 24, 2023
Emmy Award-winning performance collective, design studio, and film production company, Chicago-based Manual Cinema transforms this Dickens classic into a one-of-a-kind rendition that is “stunningly beautiful, deeply heartfelt” (Chicago Theater Review). Avowed holiday skeptic Aunt Trudy has been obliged to channel her late husband Joe’s Christmas cheer in a family Zoom call turned puppet show. But as Trudy succumbs to her own version of Scrooge’s story, the puppets take on a life of their own. This haunting show is like nothing you’ve ever seen. Rated PG due to some heavy themes and extra spookiness.

The Gift of the Magi

The Gift of the Magi
Oil Lamp Theater, 1723 Glenview Rd., Glenview
Nov. 16–Dec. 30, 2023
In this treasured story by O. Henry, Jon Jory’s lovely adaptation embraces the sweet young couple very much in love. Jim and Della are each determined to buy the other a truly meaningful gift despite their financial troubles. Interwoven with holiday musical interludes, this production illustrates the depth of love and the willingness to make sacrifices for the ones we care about. The show explores themes of selflessness, the true meaning of gift-giving, and the value of relationships in Oil Lamp Theater’s charming and intimate playhouse.

he State Ballet of Ukraine presents Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

The State Ballet Theatre of Ukraine Presents Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie
Nov. 18, 2023
Beloved fairy tales often inspire creators to re-imagine every aspect of them. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs from notorious Brothers Grimm comes dazzlingly to life in dance and staging by the State Ballet Theater of Ukraine. This timely story about love, friendship, witchcraft, and the eternal struggle between good and evil boasts an excellent plot, dynamic music, and famous characters with virtuoso solos, comical dwarfs, and funny little animals. An excellent opportunity to spend time with the family and introduce children to the art of classical ballet.

Dial M for Murder

Dial M for Murder
Northlight Theater, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie
Nov. 30–Dec. 31, 2023
An edge-of-your-seat adaptation of a modern classic, Dial M for Murder was a hit stage play in London and on Broadway before Alfred Hitchcock’s film version of the crime thriller captivated audiences. Meet Tony Wendice who married his wife Margot for money, neglected her, got jealous of her affair, and now wants her dead. In his meticulous planning of the perfect crime, Tony spins a web of suspicion and deception that will ensnare them both with plenty of twists and turns along the way.

Salt Creek Ballet's The Nutcracker

Salt Creek Ballet’s The Nutcracker
North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie
Dec. 1–2, 2023
Salt Creek Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker charms with their whimsical tale of young Clara and her magical journey with waltzing flowers, giant mice, and sugar plum fairies, all exquisitely set to Tchaikovsky’s enchanting score. This affordable, full-length holiday production is performed in the grand tradition by a professional company with exceptional guest soloists surrounded by amazing new sets and vibrant costumes. The cast of one hundred — including local children and young adults aged eight to 17 from the ballet’s school — the Chicago Tribune praises the show as “a real treat.”

Shrek the Musical

Music Theater Works Presents Shrek: The Musical
North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie
Dec. 21–31, 2023
Enter the “Big Bright Beautiful World” with everyone's favorite ogre. Based on the Oscar-winning film, Shrek: The Musical brings these beloved animated characters to life — from Fiona to Donkey to the Gingerbread Cookie’s ongoing fights with The Muffin Man! Winning Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Book, and Best Original Score, there’s more to this story than meets the ears. The hilarious stage spectacle includes that short-tempered bad guy and more than a dozen other fairy-tale misfits all getting into the act, including a pep talk for Pinocchio.


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