Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Christmas Carol

If the 20th time just isn't a charm for you and your loved ones when it comes to A Christmas Carol and other conventional Christmas standards, Taproot's got good news: a brand new mashup of the Dickens classic. John Longenbaugh's play tracks the structure of the original pretty closely, but with a misanthropic, ungrateful, and intellectually arrogant Sherlock Holmes as the one destined to learn some important lessons of the season. Terry Edward Moore manfully carries the show as Holmes, hilariously dispatching all signs of magical thinking or sentimentality in the early scenes, then gamely emitting the necessary expressions of regretful surprise (and alerting the audience as to where the hell the scenes are unfolding) as he is transported to past, present, and future. But it's the portly Stephen Grenley who most wins over the crowd with his charming, high-energy depiction of the flawed but good-hearted Dr. Watson. Theatergoers familiar with Longenbaugh's recently staged work--a play about the Lusty Lady and a series of ribald shorts--can settle comfortably into their seats with Grandma; this one's strictly family-friendly. MARK D. FEFER

Fridays, 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 2 & 8 p.m.; Tuesdays-Thursdays, 7:30 p.m. Starts: Nov. 26. Continues through Dec. 30, 2010

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