"Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley" at Northlight Theatre

Emily Berman in Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley (Photo by Michael Courier.)

This holiday season, Steppenwolf, Northlight and Writers Theatre have some presents for us: new plays, never seen before on local stages.

“Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley”

Through Dec. 18

In this newly imagined sequel to Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice,” Mary Bennet (Emily Berman) grows tired of being the dutiful middle sister. At Christmastime, an unexpected guest offers a chance of love. Jessica Thebus directs this world premiere by playwrights Lauren Gunderson and Margot MelconNorthlight Theatre, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie, 847-673-6300

“Singin’ in the Rain”

Through Dec. 31

The 1952 movie starring Gene Kelly is one of the most beloved screen musicals ever, so trying to capture its Hollywood magic in a live stage version is a no-brainer. With esteemed director William Brown in charge, this Marriott production is likely to make a splash. Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Drive, Lincolnshire, 847-634-0200

“The Christians”

Dec. 1 to Jan. 29

Lucas Hnath, the smart playwright behind “Isaac’s Eye,” has been winning praise for this drama about a megachurch. The New York Times called it a “terrific play about the mystery of faith,” and Christianity Today said, “It’s a harrowing dig through our hearts.” K. Todd Freeman directs the Chicago premiere. Steppenwolf Theatre Garage, 1624 N. Halsted St., Chicago, 312-335-1650

“The Hunter and the Bear”

Dec. 7 to Jan. 22

PigPen Theatre’s inventive players — who conjured up so much fun with “The Old Man and the Old Moon” at Writers in 2013 — are back with a new show, told by flickering campfire light. The group uses shadow puppets and folk music to tell the tale of a hunter searching through the dark woods for his missing son. Writers Theatre, 325 Tudor Court, Glencoe, 847-242-6000 

“Die Fledermaus”

Dec. 26 to Jan. 1

As this accomplished company prepares to change its name — becoming Music Theater Works in 2017 — it ends the year with a 30-piece orchestra playing Johann Strauss’ operetta. A husband and wife run into each other at a masquerade. Neither is supposed to be there. Romantic hijinks ensue. Sprechen sie kein Deutsch? Don’t worry — this adaptation is in English. Light Opera Works, at Cahn Auditorium, 600 Emerson, Evanston, 847-920-5360

Other shows worth checking out:

“Sweet Charity”
Through Nov. 20
Northwestern University’s Barber Theater, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston

“King Charles III”
Through Jan. 15
Chicago Shakespeare Theater, 800 E. Grand Ave., Chicago

“East Texas Hot Links”
Through Jan. 22
Writers Theatre, 325 Tudor Court, Glencoe

“A Christmas Carol”
Nov. 19 to Dec. 31
Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn St., Chicago

Nov. 23 to Jan. 8
Remy Bumppo at Greenhouse, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago

“Mr. and Mrs. Pennyworth”
Dec. 7 to Feb. 19
Lookingglass Theatre, 821 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago

Cheek by Jowl’s “The Winter’s Tale”
Dec. 14 – 21
Chicago Shakespeare Theater, 800 E. Grand Ave., Chicago

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