Top things to do in Columbus for Dec. 20-22

“Matchgirl,” Thursday, Dec. 19-Saturday, Dec. 21

This weekend is your last chance to see “Matchgirl,” Columbus Dance Theatre’s family holiday show for two decades. The ballet, which brings together CDT’s professional dancers with students from the training school and features the music of Aaron Copland, is based on the poignant Hans Christian Andersen tale of a young girl who sells matches and who, on a frigid night, must burn her own wares to keep warm. After 20 years, CDT is retiring this charming production. Catch an evening performance Friday or Saturday, a matinee on Saturday, or bring the kiddoes to a morning performance on Thursday or Friday. columbusdancetheatre.com

“A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder,” through Sunday, Dec. 22

The holidays are a time for gathering with loved ones and celebrating together blah, blah, blah—if your family is already driving you up a wall, this musical comedy provides a welcome escape with its tale of a man who murders his rich relatives to gain his rightful fortune. “A Christmas Carol” it is not. The Gallery Players’ rendition of the rollicking 2014 Tony winner will hit the stage at the The Jewish Community Center of Greater Columbus three more times in its final weekend. Consider it the bloody calm before the storm of joy. $22-$30. columbusjcc.org/cultural-arts/gallery-players

"Christmas in December: A Hallmark Parody," Friday, Dec. 20

Shake up the holiday tradition of saccharine, overly predictable, girl-meets-boy-and-learns-the-true-meaning-of-Christmas movies by heading to The Nest for “Christmas in December: A Hallmark Parody.” The improv show celebrating the ubiquitous made-for-TV movies ends its three-week run this weekend. nesttheatre.com

"The Hip Hop Nutcracker," Sunday, Dec. 22

If you’re down for a fresh take on the classic holiday tradition, “The Hip Hop Nutcracker” returns to the Palace Theatre. The show, set in Brooklyn in the 1980s, features music performed by an onstage DJ, electric violinist and one of hip hop's founding fathers, Kurtis Blow, who opens the show with a short set. Tickets are $30 to $60. capa.com

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