On Stage – this week in local theater
Matthew Wrather dons the candy-cane tights to revive a one-man play by NPR humorist David Sedaris. The story follows Sedaris’ experiences as an unemployed writer taking a job as an elf at Macy’s in New York City, and in doing so learning how the holiday season brings out the best and worst in everyone. Keep the kids at home for this adult comedy and get a little tipsy with a pre-show glass of champagne or egg nog included with ticket purchase.
Closes this weekend. Plays at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and at 3:30 p.m. Sunday. $29.50. (310) 394-9779, ext. 2.; santamonicaplayhouse.com
The Bookworm:“Jane Austen Unscripted” @ The Broad Stage
Austen-heads can come to the theater in costume to see this live improv show inspired by the famous novelist’s oeuvre of unwritten works. A cast of seven from Impro Theatre takes suggestions from the audience to create a dramatic world fit for any Austen novel. No two shows are ever the same, but charming cads, love-sick girls and brooding gentlemen are sure to abound during these evenings of wit and revelry.
Closes this weekend. Playing at 7:30 p.m. Friday, at 4 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, and at 2 and 5 p.m. Sunday. $40. The Edye at The Broad Stage, 1310 11th St., Santa Monica. (310) 434-3200; broadstage.com
The Songbird: “Julia Migenes Sings Kurt Weill” @ Odyssey Theatre
With nothing but the bare essentials — her voice and a piano — acclaimed mezzo-soprano Julia Migenes takes audiences on a musical journey of composer Kurt Weill’s music, from Berlin to Paris to New York.
Now playing at 8 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays, through Jan. 16. $25 to $35. The Odyssey Theatre, 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., West L.A. (310) 477-2055, ext. 2; odysseytheatre.com
The Existential Crisis: “Straight White Men” @ Kirk Douglas Theatre
In this historical zeitgeist where identity matters and privilege is problematic, what does it mean to be a straight white man? Playwright and director Young Jean Lee explores the contentious topics of race, gender, ethnicity and all that comes with them in the West Coast premiere of her play about three adult brothers and their father grappling with such questions during a Christmas gathering.
Closes this weekend. Plays at 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, at 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, and at 1 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, 9820 Washington Blvd., Culver City. $25 to $55. (213) 628-2772; centertheatregroup.org
The Whodunit: “Something’s Afoot” @ Westchester Playhouse
Got a clue? The Kentwood Players might. The Westchester troupe traipses around a lakeside British estate seeking answers for the murder of Lord Dudley Rancor in this mystery musical spoof that’s based on detective stories such as Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None.”
Last performance is at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18, at Westchester Playhouse, 8301 Hindry Avenue, Westchester. $25. (310) 645-5156; kentwoodplayers.org
Ladies Night: “Not that Jewish” @ The Braid
What does it mean to have a “Jewish heart”? That’s what Emmy-award winning writer and comedian Monica Piper wants to know in her one-woman show about being a single mom in Hollywood and writing for the hit TV shows “Roseanne” and “Rugrats.” Gather your girlfriends for this show that promises hysterical laughs and poignant moments.
Closes this weekend.
Plays at 8 p.m. Thursday and Saturday and at 2 p.m. Sunday at The Braid, 2912 Colorado Ave., Santa Monica. $35. (310) 315-1400; jewish-
The Connoisseur: “Awake and Sing!” @ Odyssey Theatre
Clifford Odets aficionados may enjoy this flash from the past. His play about the hopes and struggles of a lower-middle-class, three-generation Jewish family, living in the Bronx during the Great Depression still resonates 80 years after its 1935 premiere. Director Elina de Santos and lead actress Marilyn Fox return with a 20th anniversary revival of the smash Odyssey Theatre production that ran for nine months in 1994-95.
Run extended. Now playing at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and at 2 p.m. Sundays through Jan. 31. The Odyssey Theatre, 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., West L.A. $15 to $34. (310) 477-2055, ext. 2; odysseytheatre.com