For many, the holiday season is a chance to reach out to family and friends and create traditions together. These can involve seasonally-inspired arts events, or be a complete departure from these. The Victoria arts scene continues to grow and present intriguing possibilities for your enjoyment.
Pantomime for the holidays is a British tradition that dates back centuries and, in Victoria, it’s so popular that tickets sell-out by early December. Tickets are on sale now at local outlets.
This year, St. Luke’s Players mount Snow White and the Magnificent Seven Dwarves, Dec. 20-Jan. 1. Stlukesplayers.org
The Peninsula Players’ show is A Christmas Carol: The Panto, Dec. 12-14 at Berwick Royal Oak, and Dec. 19-28 at the Charlie White Theatre in Sidney. Thepeninsulaplayers.ca
It’s a good year for fans of Jane Austen. After Langham Court’s triumph with Pride and Prejudice, the Canadian College of Performing Arts Company C presents Sense and Sensibility, Dec. 3-6 in a site-specific version at St Ann’s Academy. Ccpacanada.com
The Oak Bay Beach Hotel hosts the sparkling holiday revue It’s Christmas! Nov. 28-Dec. 26. oakbaybeachhotel.com
Founded in 2012 by Christine Chepyha and Gordon Miller, Sing Your Joy is the only non-auditioned young-adult chorus in Victoria. On Dec. 5 at First Met they present Out Loud, a joy-filled concert of favourites. Singyourjoy.ca
Did you grow up on the film A Christmas Story? Now more than 30 years old, it has been adapted as a musical. VOS stages this hilarious and heart-warming tale of Ralphie and his quest for a BB gun, Dec. 5-14 at the McPherson Playhouse. vos.bc.ca
Local playwright Janet Munsil’s new play T Cratchit Inc. is part of Intrepid Theatre’s YOU Show series, Dec. 6. This continuation of Dickens’ classic Christmas story re-discovers the lad in the new world, a tycoon at the heart of a nation-building empire of steel and steam. Intrepidtheatre.com
Our Place and CBC Victoria collaborate on a dramatic reading of Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol, Dec. 10 at Alix Goolden Hall. Featuring the vocal talents of Shelagh Rogers, Gregor Craigie, Jo-Ann Roberts, Bob McDonald and Arthur Black. Ourplacesociety.com
Award-winning crowd favourites, Paper Street Theatre return with another full-length improvisation Miracle on Paper Street: An Improvised Christmas Classic, Dec. 17-20, Intrepid Theatre Studio. Improvisation so expertly executed, you won’t believe it’s unscripted. Ticketrocket.org
Take a break from the hectic pace with A Place to Listen, now in its third season. A few notes and silence. Works by Laura Steenberge, Leo Svirsky, Alex Jang, and Daniel Brandes performed by the A Place to Listen Ensemble on Dec. 17 at James Bay United Church.
If you have never experienced The Nutcracker Ballet, and would like to support a local emerging ballet company, Ballet Étoile stages Land of the Sweets: A Nutcracker Fantasy Dec. 19-21 at Berwick Royal Oak. It’s the perfect length for children to enjoy. Ticketrocket.org
Now in his third season, Derwin Blanshard hosts an Extremely Classy Christmas Programme Dec. 28 at the Victoria Event Centre. It’s a complete send-up of a live TV hit show with appearances by many of Victoria’s favourite performers. Derwinblanshard.com
No year-end would be complete without the festivities of Atomic Vaudeville’s Winter and New Year’s Cabaret Dec. 29-31. Ticketrocket.org.
Janis La Couvée is a community builder, writer and arts advocate.