Beth Bradley’s church’s Christmas pageant is predictable every year: the angel choir wears too much lipstick, the shepherds are all in their father’s bathrobes, and the minister’s son is permanently cast in the role of Joseph. But when authoritative pageant director Mrs. Armstrong breaks her leg, it is up to Beth’s inexperienced mother Grace to step in. The timing couldn’t be worse, as the rambunctious Herdman children, a rough and tough group of siblings, descend upon the pageant, lured by the promise of free dessert at Sunday school. They are determined to win all the lead roles for themselves. Beth and her community watch in surprise as the same old Christmas story is rejuvenated by the creativity, energy, and unexpected sincerity of a misunderstood young family. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever will run at the Anacostia Playhouse, 2020 Shannon Pl. SE, from Dec. 9 to 23, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. $20 to $40. PWYC will be available at door 30 minutes prior to curtain. anacostiaplayhouse.com.