Take a break from shopping with the Walnut Street Theatre's production, an hourlong musical, which opens with a show at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Center City landmark at 825 Walnut St., and continues with morning shows on a varied schedule to Dec. 21. Tickets are $10 to $16. Call 215-574-3550.
The venerable Hedgerow Theatre presents Nagle Jackson's version for the 21st year, with the show opening at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 6 at the company's theater, 64 Rose Valley Rd., Rose Valley, and continuing on a varied schedule to Dec. 31. Tickets are $15 to $34. Call 610-565-4211.
The Philadelphia Orchestra has been performing the great oratorio for more than 50 years. This year, Cristian Macelaru conducts, with soloists Yulia Van Doren, soprano; Sasha Cooke, mezzo-soprano; Nicholas Phan, tenor; and Alexander Dobson, baritone, along with the Philadelphia Singers Chorale, at the Kimmel Center's Verizon Hall, Broad and Spruce Streets, at 2 p.m. Dec. 22. Tickets are $48 to $124. Call 215-893-1999. (The orchestra will also perform selections from its CD The Glorious Sound of Christmas, with conductor Sarah Hicks, at the Kimmel at 7 p.m. Dec. 19 to 21.)
Pennsylvania Ballet presents George Balanchine's version of Tchaikovsky's masterpiece at the Academy of Music, Broad and Locust Streets, opening with performances at 2 and 7 p.m. Dec. 7 and running on a varied schedule to Dec. 29. Tickets are $20 to $125. Call 215-893-1999.
The Brandywine Ballet's presentation of Donna Muzio and Nancy Page's version at West Chester University's Asplundh Hall, 700 S. High St., West Chester, opens with a performance at 10 a.m. Dec. 13, and continues on a varied schedule to Dec. 22. Tickets are $10 to $42. Call 610-696-2711.
Time for dance
The experimental troupe Brian Sanders' Junk performs the choreographer's new seasonal work Snowball, about a gang of kids battling an evil ice queen to a score of 1980s pop hits. The interactive work lets audience members do some dancing and get into an indoor snowball fight (wear all-white and get five extra snowballs). The battle starts at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Annenberg Center, 3680 Walnut St., and continues with rematches on a Thursday-through- Sunday schedule to Dec. 15. Tickets are $20 to $40. Call 215-898-3900.
The Eleone Dance Theatre performs its holiday tradition Carols in Color at Penn Charter's Kurtz Center, 3000 W. School House Lane, at 3 and 7 p.m. Dec. 21 and 22. Tickets are $30; $27 seniors and ages 12 and under. Call 267-235-0163.
The Lantern Theater Company's adaptation of Dylan Thomas' A Child's Christmas in Wales features Sebastienne Mundheim's puppet sculptures creating a "three-dimensional storybook." The show opens at 7 p.m. Dec. 11 at St. Stephen's Theater, 10th and Ludlow Streets, and continues on a varied schedule to Jan. 5. Tickets are $20 to $38. call 215-829-0395.
The musical Elf adapts the 2003 film about a young orphan mistakenly brought to the North Pole and raised as one of Santa's little helpers (though he's king-sized). The show goes on at the Walnut Street Theatre, 825 Walnut St., on a Tuesday through Sunday schedule to Jan. 5 (no shows Christmas Eve or Christmas Day). Tickets are $10 to $95. Call 215-574-3550.
Peter Fogel stars in Steve Solomon's relatable comedy My Mother's Italian, My Father's Jewish and I'm Home for the Holidays, a one-man show in which that man struggles to get a flight home, while reflecting on his chaotic life. The show opens at 8 p.m. Friday at the Penn's Landing Playhouse at the Independence Seaport Museum, 211 S. Columbus Blvd. and Walnut St., and continues with performances on a Thursday- through-Sunday schedule to Dec. 31. Tickets are $35 to $55. Call 855-448-7469.
Get your panto on
Pioneers of the panto - the British tradition featuring fractured fairy tales with topical jokes, audience participation, a "messy bit," and silly songs - the People's Light & Theatre Company presents Cinderella as a gangster fairy tale. The show goes on at the company's theater, 39 Conestoga Rd., Malvern, on a varied schedule to Jan. 12. Tickets are $35 to $50. Call 610-644-3500.
Famed in Europe but with Mount Airy roots, conductor David Charles Asbell comes home to lead the Philly Pops for the holidays, with soloist Angela Brown, three choirs, and Peter Conte at the organ, at the Kimmel Center's Verizon Hall, Broad and Spruce Streets, at 8 p.m. Dec. 6, 3 p.m. Dec. 7, 8 p.m. Dec. 11 and 13, 3 p.m. Dec. 14, 3 and 7 p.m. Dec. 15, 8 p.m. Dec. 18, and 3 p.m. Dec. 21. Tickets are $26 to $111. Call 215-893-1999.
The luminous Melba Moore stars in A Soulful Christmas Shout for Joy!, featuring a quintet of choirs - Enon Tabernacle, Bright Hope Baptist, Arch Street Presbyterian, High School for Creative and Performing Arts, and the J. Donald Dumpson Singers - performing carols and spirituals at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 17 at the Kimmel Center's Verizon Hall, Broad and Spruce Streets. Tickets are $25 to $45. Call 215-893-1999.
With members drawn from classical orchestras, the DePue Brothers Band brings a virtuosic pedigree to bluegrass. They present A Magical Grassical Christmas at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 12 at Temple Performing Arts Center, Broad Street. Tickets are $15. Call 1-800-298-7200.
One of the area's best traditions, TubaChristmas, gathers a brass army of tuba, sousaphone, and euphonium players (got one? Bring it!) at noon and 5 p.m. Dec. 22 at the Kimmel Center's Commonwealth Plaza, Broad and Spruce Streets. Admission is free. Call 215-893-1999.
Don't love the season? Get in line for a lump of coal with Erin McKeown's Anti-Holiday Spectacular, in which the sparkling singer-songwriter performs her own sometimes profane seasonal ditties, such as "Visions I Have Had While High" and "Christmas (Love It or Leave It)" - yeah, it's not for the children. She plays at 8 p.m. Wednesday at Ardmore Music Hall, 23 E. Lancaster Ave., Ardmore. Tickets are $15. Call 610-649-8389.