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A Very Phoenix Xmas

The show begins with a warning, "If you're looking for 'A Christmas Carol,' this isn't it." They aren't kidding.

"A Very Phoenix Xmas" is on stage now at the Phoenix Theatre in Indianapolis. The comedy show is presented annually, but with new sketches every year, written by Phoenix playwrights and submitted by audience members.

Taking snatches from Christmas tales and holiday movies the writers have melding these elements together to make a completely original creation. Featuring skits about the island of recalled toys and the tragedy of a broken Christmas cookie the show is both entertaining and a little strange.

Any Christmas show that includes a song called "Don't Eat the Baby" definitely falls into the "out of the ordinary" category. Everything from local fast food eateries to 'The Wizard of Oz' is fair game at the Phoenix.

The six person cast does a great job bringing each story to life. Michael Shelton and Sara Riemen particularly stand out. Their varied characters include munchkins, a jewish couple and a myriad of others.

The Christmas extravaganza is everything that other Christmas shows are not. It's sarcastic and dark and incredibly funny. It's probably the only holiday show that has ever included nose flutes. Yes, they exist and they are as hilarious as they sound.

The show is a breath of fresh air in a season steeped in unoriginal traditions. Seeing the normal Christmas productions is always fun and shouldn't to be forsaken, but for anyone hoping for something a little different, the Phoenix awaits.

Performances: "A Very Phoenix Xmas" closed Dec. 23, 2007.