Weekend planner for December 17

Today-Sunday: A 'Carol' with swing

Charles Dickens’s holiday tale about a miser who has a change of heart gets a jazzy soundtrack in Harlequin Productions’ “A Stardust Christmas Carol.” The twist is that the play has been placed within a musical set at the end of World War II in a New York nightclub: “We’re telling the story of ‘A Christmas Carol’ and then using songs of the 1940s to express what was going on in Victorian England, in Scrooge’s time,” said director Linda Whitney. The production continues with performances at 8 p.m. today and Saturday, plus Dec. 21-23 and 30 and Jan. 1; 3 p.m. Saturday; and 2 p.m. Sunday and Dec. 24 and 26 at the State Theater, 202 Fourth Ave. E., Olympia. Tickets are $25-$40. Call 360-786-0151.

Saturday: Dinner and a free movie

You might say Olympia Film Society has a holiday gift for you: two free movies on Saturday. The occasion is Dinner and a Movie, a fundraiser for the society. The idea is that you’ll go out to dinner between 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. at a participating restaurant (there are more than a dozen that range from Cicada to Great Cuisine of India and Old School Pizzeria), and a portion of your bill will be donated to the society. Before or after – or both – enjoy a free show. At 4 p.m. is “The Neverending Story,” a 1984 film about a boy who visits a wondrous fantasy world, and at 9 p.m. is “Some Like It Hot,” the 1959 comedy starring Marilyn Monroe, Jack Lemon and Tony Curtis. The screenings are at Capitol Theater, 206 Fifth Ave. S.E., Olympia. Go to www.olympiafilmsociety.org.

Today-Sunday: 'Women,' song

Theatrical options this week are as numerous as presents under the tree. Capital Playhouse is offering the Broadway musical version of “Little Women.” “It’s universal. It’s family. It’s fun,” said director Adam Michael Lewis. The show wraps up its run at 7:30 p.m. today and Saturday, 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, and 7 p.m. Sunday at Capital Playhouse, 612 Fourth Ave. E., Olympia. Tickets are $35-$41 for adults, $30-$36 for seniors and youths. Call 360-943-2744 or go to www.capitalplayhouse.com.

Today-Sunday: Not heartwarming

Theater Artists Olympia is known for doing holiday shows that definitely do not feature Santa, Christmas trees or nativity scenes. This year’s offering, “Blood Relations,” is a psychological thriller exploring the Lizzie Borden story. While it’s not as bloody as some of the company’s productions, it is about ax murders. Happy holidays. The production wraps up its run with performances at 7:30 p.m. today and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday at The Midnight Sun Performance Space, 113 N. Columbia St., Olympia. Tickets are $12. Go to www.olytheater.com.

Monday: Hallelujah

For those looking to participate in the entertainment – and sing to the accompaniment of musicians from Student Orchestras of Greater Olympia and the Olympia Chamber Orchestra – the Sing-Along Messiah is a gift. The free audience-participation concert of Handel’s masterpiece (which includes the Hallelujah Chorus) also includes the talents of the Olympia Choral Society and Opera Pacifica. It’s at 7:30 p.m. Monday at The Washington Center for the Performing Arts, 512 Washington St. S.E., Olympia. Doors open between 6:30-6:45 p.m.; songbooks are available for purchase in the lobby, or bring your own. Call 360-753-8586.

Today-Sunday: Tale of sisters inspires

Olympia Family Theater is offering an intimate, dramatic version of “Little Women,” focusing on the first year of Louisa May Alcott’s story. “It is about the transitions in life,” said director Samantha Chandler. “Jo is watching her sister grow and change and contemplating her own future.” The drama continues with performances at 7 p.m. today plus Dec. 23 and 24, and 2 p.m. Saturday, Sunday and Dec. 26 at the Black Box at the Minnaert Center for the Arts on the South Puget Sound Community College campus, 2011 Mottman Road S.W., Olympia. Tickets are $15.50 for adults; 12.50 for students, seniors and military; $8.50 for children younger than 12. Call 360-753-8586.

Today-Sunday: A ghostly retelling

Come holiday time, theaters often do their own version of caroling – putting on versions of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” For those who enjoy their holiday traditions with a funky twist, Olympia Little Theatre offers “Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol.” Most everyone knows what happened to Scrooge, but what do you know about the ghostly side of things? The retelling of the classic tale from Marley’s point of view wraps up its run with performances at 7:55 p.m. today and Saturday and 1:55 p.m. Sunday at the theater, 1925 Miller Ave. N.E., Olympia. Tickets are $12. Call 360-786-9484, or go to www.olympialittletheater.org.