Old Globe bringing ‘Grinch’ musical back to the stage in November

"Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas!" at the Old Globe
The Old Globe will bring back “Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” musical for an expanded run that begins Nov. 3.
(Courtesy photo by Jim Cox)

Balboa Park theater’s 2019 holiday “Scrooge” show will also be revived


After a pandemic-related move to the radio airwaves last year, the Old Globe’s “Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” musical will return to the live stage this fall for its 24th annual production.

The holiday musical will have an expanded run, with performances on the Globe’s main indoor stage Nov. 3 through Dec. 31. Also returning this fall will be a revival of “Ebenezer Scrooge’s BIG San Diego Christmas Show,” a fast-paced comedic take on Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” which was first presented at the Globe in 2019. It will play Nov. 19 through Dec. 26 in the Sheryl and Harvey White in-the-round theater.

Globe artistic director Barry Edelstein said the return of the “Grinch” musical and “Scrooge” play is symbolic of San Diego’s cultural life gradually returning to a post-pandemic “new normal.”

“All of us at the Globe are thrilled to be back in action and excited to share these beautiful works of theater with our city,” Edelstein said in a statement.

Based on a 1957 children’s book by the late La Jolla author Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel, the musical by Timothy Mason and Mel Marvin premiered in 1994 at a children’s theater in Minneapolis. In 1998, it moved to the Old Globe, where artistic director Jack O’Brien worked with Geisel’s widow, Audrey Geisel, to add music from the famous 1966 animated TV version and a storybook-come-to-life scenic and costume design. It’s been an annual tradition ever since.

Rather than cancel the show entirely in 2020, the Globe hired actors to record an audio version of the musical, which was broadcast for several free performances last year on KPBS-FM Radio.

“Ebenezer Scrooge’s BIG San Diego Christmas Show” made its West Coast premiere at the Globe two years ago. Written by Gordon Greenberg and Steve Rosen, it’s an adaptation of the Dickens classic tale of redemption re-set in San Diego with music, comedy and all of the ghosts and other characters for which the story is known.

The cast for the two holiday shows, and the on-sale date for tickets to both productions, have not been announced. For details, visit

Meanwhile, the Old Globe will open its 2021-22 production season next month with an outdoor production of the 1967 counter-culture musical “Hair.” It’s indoor season begins Sept. 10 with the world premiere of “The Gardens of Anuncia,” a musical by Michael John LaChiusa inspired by the life story of Argentina-born Broadway legend Graciela Daniele, who will direct and choreograph the show.

"Ebenezer Scrooge's BIG San Diego Christmas Show" at the Old Globe.
“Ebenezer Scrooge’s BIG San Diego Christmas Show,” first seen on the Old Globe stage in 2019, will return this fall for performances Nov. 19 through Dec. 26.
(Jim Cox)