Three and a half stars
Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre; directed and choreographed by Ron Morgan
The 15th incarnation of B&B’s Christmas musical revue is one of the more subdued I have seen. Last year, the satellite hookup with Santa at the North Pole was nixed (that was cheesy), and now Deb Wims and Kenny Shepard aren’t hosting, which saves them from reciting the same old tired jokes from years past. Instead, Doug Stark as Santa fills in costume and set changes with “letters” from kids and gets in some innocuous jokes. It’s cute enough. This year, the emphasis sits squarely with the singing and dancing — as always, high quality. The cast is decked out in a veritable runway of sparkling, slinky costumes (by Brian Horton; but what’s with the last number’s weird hats and mutant bows with balls?). Highlights include my favorite B&B Christmas singer Gerald Atkins reprising many of his numbers, including “Santa’s Back”; a regiment of tap dancing Santas in “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”; and LaDonna Burns in “Santa Baby.” The only thing I miss from shows past is the strange and disturbed elf, Jingle. He was always a highlight. Through Dec. 31; 317-872-9664.