Melbourne theatre and musicals in December

From major musicals to indie hits – here's what will get you on your feet and cheering
Tina Arena, EVITA
Photograph: Jeff Busby
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Raise your arms in praise: Tina Arena is finally in town with Opera Australia's production of Evita. As the year starts to wind down, Melbourne Theatre Company's glittering Twelfth Night is still going strong, while it's a great month for stand-up comedy.

Scroll on for a full account of what to see where this month on Melbourne's stages.

Recommended: How to get cheap theatre tickets in Melbourne.

Musicals

Theatre, Musicals

School of Rock: The Musical

icon-location-pin Her Majesty's Theatre, Melbourne
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The Rock Musical is a subset with a very chequered past. For every Hair there’s a Rent; for every Hedwig and the Angry Inch there’s an American Idiot. Andrew Lloyd Webber might have seemed an odd choice to adapt the 2003 Jack Black film School of Rock for the stage, but then the man was synonymous with the rock musical when Jesus Christ Superstar ruled the world back in 1970.

Time Out says
Theatre, Musicals

Evita

icon-location-pin Arts Centre Melbourne, Southbank
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Move over My Fair Lady: the next vintage production coming to Australia is the original Evita, with Australian pop princess Tina Arena starring as Eva Perón.

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Calamity Jane 2017 Hayes Theatre production still 01 feat Tony Taylor Virginia Gay Sheridan Harbridge photographer credit John McRae
Photograph: John McRae
Theatre, Musicals

Calamity Jane

icon-location-pin Multiple venues
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This stage version of the 1950s MGM movie musical eliminates almost all traces of Doris Day’s sugary sweetness. Virginia Gay plays the ultimate Wild West heroine in a stripped back production, which exploits every opportunity for comedy while posing questions about gender norms.

Theatre

Theatre, Drama

Twelfth Night

icon-location-pin Southbank Theatre (Melbourne Theatre Company), Southbank
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Director Simon Phillips' production of Twelfth Night features songs from Kate Miller-Heidke and Keir Nuttall, and an all-star cast.

Time Out says
Macbeth Australian Shakespeare Company 2019
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre

Macbeth

icon-location-pin Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, Melbourne
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The Australian Shakespeare Company is celebrating its 30th anniversary of Shakespeare Under the Stars in grand fashion with a brand new production of the Bard's darkest and most twisted tragedy, in the picturesque surrounds of the Royal Botanic Gardens. Nathaniel Dean is starring in the title role and Alison Whyte is Lady M.

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Peter Pan Goes Wrong 2018 tour
Photograph: Supplied
Theatre, Comedy

Peter Pan Goes Wrong

icon-location-pin Arts Centre Melbourne, Southbank
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Last year Australian audiences got a taste for the hottest comedy sensation on the West End in The Play That Goes Wrong, a raucous farce that's thankfully far more imaginative than its title. The slapstick spoof follows the members of the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society as they try to hold everything together at one disastrous performance of a murder mystery.

Perpetual Frustration Machine Theatre Works 2018
Photograph: Sean Paris
Theatre

Perpetual Frustration Machine

icon-location-pin Theatre Works, St Kilda
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Theatre Works is wrapping up its year with this unexpected merging of forms. It’s called a “circus drama” and is co-created by veteran playwright Stephen Sewell and circus master Zebastian Hunter. 

Comedy

Jim Jefferies - The Night Talker 2018
Photograph: Supplied
Comedy, Stand Up

Jim Jefferies

icon-location-pin Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne
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Sydney-born Jim Jefferies isn't afraid to tackle the tough subjects: one clip from his 2014 Netflix special on America's relationship with guns seems to go viral every time there's a mass shooting in the US.

After something a little less dramatic?

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