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Off Broadway Must-Sees for December 2013

December 11, 2013 - by Griffin Miller, Theatre Editor
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It never hurts to get a "heads up" on theatre comings and goings — especially when certain shows pop in and head out in a New York nanosecond. Here are two Off-Broadway shows I urge you to consider before they exit during this holiday season.

Using Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol as a jumping-off point, author and theatre critic emeritus Peter Filichia had this to say about how his new seasonal play, Adam’s Gifts, came to be.

"When you're a theater critic, you see A Christmas Carol quite a bit in December. There's always one extravaganza, one musical, one solo show, and almost always one update where there's an Ebenezer Scrooge (or even an Eleanor Scrooge) living in the present day. And yet nobody in the update says, 'Hey, you've got the same name as that Dickens' character.' I wondered if there were any way to update A Christmas Carol where this wouldn't be an issue. Once I started thinking along those lines, I envisioned a character who isn't named Scrooge and an entirely new plot in which the arts makes this old man a better person."

So if you’re up for a break in tradition (but not in holiday spirit), check out Adam’s Gifts during its three-night-only debut, December 19th, 20th & 21st at St. John's Lutheran Church (81 Christopher St.) in Greenwich Village. Curtain time is 7pm and ta-da, tickets are FREE with a donation to St. John's "at the door." Reservations required so be sure to visit beforehand.

We have officially entered the last week of Becoming Dr. Ruth, starring That 70’s Show’s Debra Jo Rupp as outspoken Dr. Ruth Westheimer. Lauded for her ability to channel the singular persona of the woman born Karola Ruth Siegal, Rupp infuses this comedy written by Mark St. Germain with Dr. Ruth’s delightfully quirky essence as she traces her real-life scenario, from fleeing the Nazis in the Kindertransport and becoming an Haganah scout and sniper in Jerusalem, to her rise to fame as America’s foremost sex therapist.

Debra Jo Rupp as Dr. Ruth Westheimer in Becoming Dr. Ruth Off Broadway
Photo: Carol Rosegg

And if you manage to score tickets for the 7pm performance on either December 12th or December 18th, you’ll be privy to a most impressive bonus: a post-show invitation to stay and hear the real Dr. Ruth K. Westheimer discuss the play and answer theatregoer questions.

The venue is the Westside Theatre, 407 W. 43rd St. and the show’s final performance takes place December 22nd at the 3pm matinee. For tickets, visit

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