Royalty-free Christmas plays

I have six full-length Christmas plays, all available royalty-free.

I also have several Christmas one-acts, including “The Fruitcake” (published by Brooklyn Publishers) and “Santa Claustrophobia” (published by Big Dog Plays) plus five unpublished one-acts that are available royalty-free: “The Angel Tree,” “The Girl Who Made Emus Believe They Could Fly on Christmas,” “Joy to Other Worlds,” “Let There Be Lights!” and “A Zombie Christmas.” I also have some Christmas-related scripts in the five minute or less range.

Full list below:

Here are the full-lengths:

A Christmas story that involves a talking cat, a talking mouse, an angel and a newly-single mom and her son/daughter. Christmas is approaching and there’s not much joy for Riley (who can be anywhere from roughly 8-15). His/her parents have broken up and his/her mother says there’s not enough money for even a Christmas tree. Riley decides to fashion his/her own — out of beer cans salvaged from the trash, with sticks to serve as limbs. The mom is touched by this gesture, and, against her better judgement, agrees to hang ornaments on it — including a very old angel ornament that once belonged to her grandmother. The cat — who can talk to the audience, but no one else — tries to warn that this isn’t a good idea, but the humans don’t listen. The ornament falls and breaks, angering the mom, who orders Riley to bed while she tries to drink away her sorrows. It’s then that the broken ornament turns into a real angel, who tries to deliver an important message. Cast: Five. Two females, and three non-gender (including the child).

Two orphan girls in Victorian London desperately want a proper Christmas dinner. At first, they conspire to sneak into a private club and pass themselves off as men. Their plans are frustrated by a retired military man, and two fellow orphans. That’s when they devise another plan that involves the mean old rich woman at the end of the street. Cast: Six – three male, three female.
* Virtual reading by 57 Hours Productions, Fincastle, Virginia, April 2020.
* Virtual reading by Monday Night Book Club, Minneapolis, Minnesota, Dec. 20, 2020.

A sweet Christmas story with a message. Three foreign students studying at colleges in the United States find themselves snowbound at an airport for Christmas. One is from Australia, one is from Canada, one is from Russia. Adventure ensues — involving broken chairs, computer hacking, and a health scare. By the time it’s over, each one has learned something about themselves that changes the direction of their lives. Cast: Three women of college age.
* Staged reading, Attic Productions, Fincastle, Virginia, Nov. 18, 2017.
* Produced by 57 Hours Productions, touring show in Virginia, December 2019.
* Published by Big Dog Plays, 2020, so this is no longer available royalty-free.

A different kind of Christmas story. A 12-year-old girl in the United States, disappointed that her mother couldn’t afford to celebrate Christmas, runs away from home in search of Santa Claus. Along the way she meets a series of characters eventually join the search for her as she makes her way north, eventually winding up in Churchill, Manitoba. While this appears to take a “fractured fairy tale” approach – the girl meets three people named Goldie, Frank and Murray, there’s a shepherd out tending his flock, and so forth – the ending conveys the message that Christmas isn’t about Santa Claus at all. There’s also a talking moose, three talking sheep who steal a farm truck and a police car, and a talking polar bear. Cast: 14-16, depending on doubling: 4 female, 4 male, and 6-8 non-gender. One of those female is 12 years old; one of the non-gender roles must be able to play a horn.

JOSE AND MARIA: An old story for new times
The birth of Jesus, in a modern setting. On the one hand, this is based on the New Testament accounts. On the other, it’s thoroughly updated: Joseph and Mary are Jose and Maria, two Mexican immigrants on the road to the courthouse to get their paperwork straightened out. The three wise men are three astronomy professors arguing over the nature of the star. The angel of the Lord is a pizza delivery girl named, well, Angel. And there’s a radio talk show host who talks a succession of calls from callers named Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Humorous, but with a point. Cast: 20 — 18 adults and 2 children. Gender breakdown: For the 18 adults, 7 male, 8 female, 3 non-gender; the two children may be of either gender.
• One of 18 semi-finalists in the 2003 Barter Appalachian Festival of Plays and Playwrights, Barter Theatre, Abingdon, Va.
• Produced by Attic Productions, Fincastle, Va., November 2004.
* Produced by Victorian Players, Youngstown, Ohio, December 2016.

* Video reading by Jackie Youm and friends, private group, Washington, D.C., December 2020
* Video production by Sandy Spring Theatre Group, Sandy Spring, Maryland, December 2021.

KLAUS: How it all began
The origins of Santa Claus. The story begins in the 1700s. Involves science fiction, treason against the king, a love story, and some cooking. Cast: Seven – six male, one female.
* Staged reading as part of the Hollins University Playwright’s Lab Discovery Reading Series, Roanoke, Va., December 16, 2012.
* Staged reading by Gi60 Festival Extended Reading Series, New York, N.Y., December 2, 2014.

A small English town in the 1600s tries to put on a Christmas pageant in the midst of a plague. The troupe lost all its scripts in a fire the previous year, so director writes to William Shakespeare to see if he’d write a Christmas play for the town. Comedy ensues. Cast: 13 – 2 male, 1 female, 10 non-gender. Running time: One hour.
* Virtual reading by 57 Hours Productions, Fincastle, Virginia, Dec. 12, 2020
* Produced by Eskdale High School, Millard County, Utah, Dec. 16-17, 2020
* Virtual reading by Women of Words book club, Simcoe, Ontario, Canada, Dec. 20, 2020

* Produced by Infinite Arts, Birmingham, Great Britain, December 90-11, 2021

  • Produced by Players of the Bard, Youngsville, North Carolina, December 2021

* Produced by Otley Players, Otley, Great Britain, December 2021
* Produced by Pine Island High School, Pine Island, Minnesota, December 2021

*  Virtual production by The Pandemic Players, a virtual group spanning Kentucky, Massachusetts and North Carolina, 2021

* Published by Big Dog Plays, 2022

* Produced by Shakespeare in Delaware Park, Buffalo, New York, December 2022.

A wild, action-packed Christmas farce. A young woman suddenly finds herself receiving the gifts from the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” apparently from an unknown suitor. The play begins on the thirteenth day as she copes with the chaos outside her apartment, as neighbors demand she do something about the noisy birds and pipers and drummers. The woman hatches a plan to shoot the birds and organize the people into an impromptu Christmas parade. Chaos ensues. Cast: 13 — 7f, 3m, 3 non-gender.
* Produced at Santiam High School, Mill City, Oregon, December 2013.
* Produced at First Avenue Playhouse, Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey, December 2015.
* Produced by Fountain Community Theater, Fountain, Colorado, December 2018.

* Produced by Danniella DiClaudio Productions, Charloi, Pennsylvania, December 2020.
* Produced by Del Norte High School, Del Norte, Colorado, February 2021

* Classroom reading by Roy Junior High School, Weber, Utah, December 2021.

  • Scheduled to be published by Big Dog Plays, 2022.

Here are the unpublished one-acts:

An angel appears to a single mother at Christmas and helps her find a common bond with her surly teenage daughter. Cast: Three females. Running time: 20 minutes.
* Produced by Showtimers, Roanoke, Virginia, December 5-7, 2014, with additional performance at Attic Productions annual meeting, Fincastle, December 14, 2014.
* Produced by Richmond Beach Congregational United Church of Christ, Shoreline, Washington, December 1-3, 2017.
* Produced by Actors Workout Studio, Hollywood, California, December 2017.
* Produced by A Danniella DiClaudio and Friends Production, Elizabeth, Pennsylvania, December 2018.

A poor family in Ukraine has a tree but can’t afford decorations. Meanwhile, a spiders living in the house decides the only place safe from the cleaning is the tree. Santa turns her web into tinsel, delighting everyone. Cast: five – two female, one male, two non-gender. Running time: 15 minutes. (Not to be confused with “The Christmas Spiders,” which is longer and has more characters.)
* Produced by Holy Trinity Catholic High School, Simcoe, Ontario, December 14, 2017.
* Produced by Rappahannock County Middle School, Washington, Va., December 16, 2022.

A poor family in Ukraine has a tree but can’t afford decorations. Meanwhile, three spiders living in the house decide the only place safe from the cleaning is the tree. Santa turns their webs into tinsel, delighting everyone. Cast: Six or seven. If six – four female, one male, one non-gender. If seven – four female, two male, one non-gender. Running time: 20-25 minutes.
* Produced by Liberty High School, Liberty, Texas, December 1, 2017.
* Staged reading by Attic Productions, Fincastle, Virginia, Nov. 17, 2018.
* Produced by Varnum High School, Seminole, Oklahoma, winter 2018.
* Staged reading by Take Two Theatre, Timmons, Ontario, Dec. 5, 2020

A lonely woman tries to kill herself at Christmas by eating a poinsettia, convinced the plant is poisonous. It’s not, though. A male co-worker shows up and a touching scene ensues. Cast: Two – one male, one female.Running time: 20 minutes.
* Produced by Studio C Artists, Hollywood, California, December 2015.
* Produced by Artists Exchange, Cranston, Rhode Island, August 2016.

* Produced by Silver Spring Stage, Silver Spring, Maryland, August 2017.
* Produced by Actors Workout Studio, Hollywood, California, December 2017.
* Staged reading by Mill Mountain Theatre / Hollins University, December 2017.
* Produced by Tri-County Players, Cincinnati, Ohio, December 2018.
* Produced by Unified Theatre Company, Lynchburg, Virginia, December 2019.
* Produced by Possibilities Theatre, Chicago, Illinois, Dec. 2020.
* Produced by by Pop Up Productions, Louisiana, Dec. 2020.
* Video production by The Quannapowitt Players Suburban Holidays festival in Reading, Mass., Nov. 2020-January 2021.


An Australian Christmas story. Sort of. A young girl decides that Santa should celebrate an Australian Christmas by having emus full his sleigh. One problem: They’re flightless birds. So she takes it upon herself to teach them to fly. Cast: Eight – four female, two male, two non-gender. Running time: 20 minutes.
* Edited version produced by private tutor teaching English as a Second Language in Hong Kong, December 2018.
* Produced by Quannapowitt Players Suburban Holidays festival, Reading, Mass., Nov 29-30, Dec. 1, 5-7, 2019.

* Staged reading by Valley Playhouse, Harrisonburg, Virginia, December 5, 2021.

A man’s display of Christmas lights flashing to the tune of “Joy to The World” attracts the attention of an alien race, which struggles to interpret the transmission. Cast: Nine — Four male, three female, two non-gender or one male, six females, two non-gender.
* Version A produced by Back Yard Theatre Company, Steinbach, Manitoba, December 2014.
* Version B produced by Millard County Schools, Utah, December 2016.
* Version B produced by Otherworld Theatre, Chicago, Illinois, November 2017.
* Version B produced by Cotton Hill Methodist Church, Springfield, Illinois, December 2017.
* Version B produced by Liberty High School, Frisco, Texas, December 2018.
* Version B produced by Beyond The Proscenium Ensemble, Cincinnati, Ohio, Dec. 13-15, 20-21, 2019.
* Version B produced by The Playhouse, Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, Dec. 2020.
* Scheduled to be produced by Redlands U3A Theatre Group, Brisbane, Australia, October 2021;cancelled due to covid.

* Virtual reading by Pandemic Players, based in Kentucky, Massachusetts and North Carolina, December 2021

Two neighbors plot to see who can put on the biggest display of Christmas lights, with comical, and catastrophic, results. Cast: Eight — two adult males, two adult females, two teen-age males, two teen-age females. Running time: 30 minutes.
* Staged reading at Seton Hall University, New Jersey, December 2015.
* Produced by Liberty High School, Liberty, Texas, December 1, 2017.
* Produced by Otto-Eldred High School, Duke Center, Pennsylvana, December 2018.
* Produced by St. Luke’s Methodist Church, Hickory, North Carolina, December 19, 2018.
* Produced by Pine Island High School, Pine Island, Minnesota, December 21, 2018.
* Scheduled to be produced by Geo Prep Mid-City of Greater Baton Rouge, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, December 2018 but apparently never was.
* Produced by Mills Masquers Theatre, Glenwood, Iowa, Dec. 6-18, 13-15, 2019.
* Produced by the Belfast Maskers, Belfast, Maine, Dec. 2020.

* Virtual production by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Library, San Jose, California, December 2021.

  • Scheduled to be produced by Chance 2 Dance, Maitland, Florida, December 2021

An allegorical Christmas story. A stray sheep leads two girls in rural Australia to a hidden stash of stars. Cast consists of a talking sheep, a talking dog and two teenage girls. Cast: Four – two female, two non-gender.

Santa and his sleigh plummet from the sky one Christmas Eve, landing in the waters off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador. There an Arctic mermaid and her animal friends – a seal, a polar bear, a beaver and three Canada geese — come to his rescue to get his sleigh repaired so that Santa can return to his deliveries. Cast: Eight – 1 male, 1 female, 6 non-gender.

* Virtual reading by Pandemic Players, based in Kentucky, Massachusetts and North Carolina, December 2021

An enterprising reporter exposes Santa’s secret: His reindeer are all female but a misogynistic Santa has tried to hide that fact. Cast: Seven – 1 male, 5 female, 1 non-gender.

The traditional Christmas Carol story, more or less, told with each actor speaking a line of just a single word. Cast: Can be done with as few as six, or expanded larger, if you desire. With six, 4 male, 1 female, 1 non-gender. Feel free, of course, to use non-traditional casting. Running time: About 20 minutes.
*Video production by Attic Productions, Fincastle, Virginia, December 2020.
* Scheduled to be produced by Pocket Sandwich Theatre, McKinney, Texas, December 2020 but cancelled due to technical issues
* Video production by Blank Conversations Theatre Company, Las Cruces, New Mexico, January 2021.

A church Christmas pageant on Christmas Eve has gone awry — the minister and the pageant director are stuck inside a horse costume, which was the best the church could manage to replicate a donkey. Now the “horse” and the Virgin Mary are in the hospital emergency room, trying to figure out how to get unstuck. The situation isn’t resolved until the appearance of a mysterious blue singer, who tries out a series of instruments — trumpet, bugle, trombone, harmonica — to play “The First Noel.” Cast: Five — three adult females, one teenage female, one adult male. Running time: Fifteen minutes. Note: You’ll need a trumpet, bugle, trombone, harmonica. And the blues singer will need to play the harmonica and sing.


A last-minute substitute attempts to preside over a Christmas pageant, which has devolved into chaos – unruly kids, a pushy parent, a church busybody, a kitchen on fire. And then there’s the foreign exchange student, who’s supposed to be the angel, who is in the restroom in tears because it’s her first Christmas away from home. Then something unexpected happens. Cast: 21 – 6 adults (four female, one male, one non-gender), 7 teenagers (five female, two male), 8 early teens or pre-teens (one female, seven non-gender.)
* Produced by Victorian Players, Youngstown, Ohio, December 2016.
* Produced by Lewis County Community Theatre, Weston, West Virginia, December 2017.
* Produced by Red River Revue, Clarksville, Texas, December 2017.

Santa wonders why he hasn’t heard from Virginia, so he goes to check up on her. He surprises her during an authorized party when her parents are away. Complications ensue. Cast: Eight — 1 male, 6 female, 1 non-gender.

A grandfather and grandmother dress up as a zombie and a vampire to try to connect their their teen-age granddaughter. Miscommunication ensues. Cast: Four – one senior male, one senior female, one adult female, one teen female. Running time: Fifteen minutes.
* Staged reading, Princeton Theatre Group, Princeton, Illinois, July 2016.
* Produced by Victorian Players, Youngstown, Ohio, December 2016.
* Produced by Beyond The Proscenium Ensemble, Cincinnati, Ohio, Dec. 13-15, 20-21, 2019.
* Produced by Chesterfield Children’s Theatre, Richmond, Virginia, Dec. 13, 2019.
* Produced by Quannapowitt Players for Suburban Holidays, Reading, Massachusetts, December 2021.

Ten-minute Christmas plays:

A goat wants to be part of Christmas. Dark comedy ensues. Cast of five: One female, four non-gender. Running time: Ten minutes.
* Staged reading at Arts Resources for the Tri-State, Huntington, West Virginia, December 2015.
* Produced by Actors Workout Studio, Hollywood, California, December 2017.
* Staged reading by The Ambassadors, at New Wimbledon Theatre, London, December 15, 2019.

* Produced by Pocahontas County High School, performed on air on WVMR, Alleghany Mountain Radio, Dunmore, West Virginia.

A Christmas story, in two parts. Part one is written like a sit-com: It’s just before Christmas and the shopping mall Santa has sent word he won’t be showing up. Just then, security brings in a homeless man found rooting around in the trash outside. The manager makes him the Santa. Part two turns more serious. Things have gone very well, almost too well. Then comes the last kid in line, who turns out to be the homeless man’s son. Cast: Six — 2 male adults, 1 female adult, 1 male child, 2 non-gender adults. Running time: Eight to ten minutes.
* Staged reading at No Shame Theatre, Mill Mountain Theatre, Roanoke, Va., Dec. 15 and 22, 2006.
* Staged reading at Southern Nash High School, Bailey, North Carolina, December 2015.
* Produced at Tokomairiro High School, Milton, New Zealand, December 2016.
* * Produced by Richmond Beach Congregational United Church of Christ, Shoreline, Washington, December 1-3, 2017.
* Produced by Snyder Schools Drama Club, Snyder, Oklahoma, Dec. 11 and 18, 2019.

* Produced by Pocahontas County High School, performed on air on WVMR, Alleghany Mountain Radio, Dunmore, West Virginia.

A short time from now in the future, monarch butterflies have gone extinct. So why is a young girl, who has never spoken before, now repeating the word “milkweed,” the sole plant that monarch caterpillars fed on? We find out on an icy Christmas morning. Cast: Three – 1 adult female, 1 non-gender child, 1 non-gender adult.

Five-minute Christmas plays:

A parade of stars apply to be the Christmas star. Suitable for a church Christmas pageant with lots of very small parts for kids. Cast: 17, all gender-flexible.


  1. #1 by Mary long on September 15, 2013 - 9:21 pm

    I am very interested in perusal scripts for the thirteenth day of Christmas and Santa Claustrophobia. Does anyone have these as an e-script since I need to make a decision by Tuesday and do not have time for it to be mailed to me. Thank you for your help.

    Mary Long

  2. #2 by Beth on September 17, 2014 - 2:42 pm

    I am interested in some of these plays how can I get copies?

  3. #3 by Jeremy Plett on October 19, 2014 - 4:17 am

    interested in Joy to Other Worlds and Let There be Lights for use in community theatre. how can I get copy or samples

  4. #4 by dramatiquedesigns on April 28, 2015 - 2:57 pm

    Hi, I run a non profit theatre in Portland or and we are looking for one acts for a Christmas show. Where can I read your one act shows you described in this post?

  5. #5 by Cassandra on November 19, 2015 - 11:22 pm

    I would be interested in reading Joy to the Other Worlds. Please let me know what needs to be done to get access to the script for review. Needing something to perform for a church Christmas program

  6. #6 by Lindsey Reams on November 30, 2015 - 4:05 pm

    Would love to read Let There Be Lights! Looking for a short Christmas Play for student run organization

  7. #7 by Marianna Hernandez on November 9, 2016 - 12:38 pm

    Hello, I’m a drama teacher and am interested in having my students perform these plays. How do I go about getting the scripts. Please let me know, thanks!

  8. #8 by eplitfilmportfolio on November 9, 2016 - 12:39 pm

    Hello! I’m interested in some of these plays. How do I go about getting the scripts for them?

  9. #9 by Cyndi on October 12, 2017 - 1:07 am

    Looking for a couple of scripts or one long one that I can split in two acts for a small theatre troupe attached to a church. There are a couple of yours that look interesting. Is it possible to pursue them to see if they will work?

  10. #10 by Ebony pace on November 7, 2017 - 1:43 pm

    How can I receive your plays?

  11. #11 by Lacy Rae Cochran on September 4, 2018 - 9:08 pm

    Hi there! Myself and my company are interested in Thirteenth Day of Christmas script. Would you be able to send it over to us so we can preview it? Thank you!

  12. #12 by Meg Walck on October 16, 2018 - 12:23 pm

    Hello, I have a very small group of teens interested in performing Let There Be Lights. Is there a way I can view the script? Thank you!

  13. #13 by Scott M. Gamble on November 2, 2018 - 12:04 am

    Hello, Mr. Yancey. I am interested in being able to read the scripts of “On the 13th day of Christmas” and also “Svetlanas first Christmas away from home.” I am looking for something with a relatively large cast that is full length for a high school play. Please let me know how to proceed.
    Thank you,
    Scott M. Gamble

  14. #14 by Nolly on November 10, 2018 - 5:35 am
    I want broken angel please

  15. #15 by Karen Cullison on November 21, 2018 - 8:18 am

    Thanks for this opportunity to try out your work, Mr. Yancy. Could we please look at The Girl who Made Emus Believe They Could Fly on Christmas. Thanks so much. I have a group here in China who might be able to pull this off, if you would consider us! Thanks so much! Karen Cullison

  16. #16 by Blair Tucker on November 26, 2018 - 7:01 pm

    Hello! I am interested in reading the script of “Follow Her Star.” Please let me know how to proceed.

  17. #17 by Megan Parker on October 14, 2019 - 5:42 pm

    Hi there! I’d love to get access to Exchange of Gifts. Let me know how I should proceed.

  18. #18 by Anne Douglas on December 7, 2020 - 3:09 pm

    Hi! I’m interested in Exchange of Gifts, Lost Light Found and the Christmas Goat. How can I have a look at them? Thanks in advanced!

  19. #19 by Ana de León on December 7, 2020 - 3:14 pm

    Hi! Could it be possible for me to take a look at Exchange of Gifts, Lost Light Found and The Christmas Goat? Thanks in advanced!

  20. #20 by Cat Amspaugh on August 25, 2021 - 6:28 pm

    Good afternoon, Mr. Yancy. I write from the confines of Heritage High School in Maryville, TN, in search of royalty-free Christmas plays. I encountered your web site, and was overjoyed to discover several Christmas plays which might be perfect for our extremely small theatre class!

    Could we please peruse “The Angel Tree,” “Death by Poinsettia,” A Zombie Christmas,” and “Lost Light Found?”

    Thank you so much!

    ~ Cat

  21. #21 by Brittney on August 31, 2021 - 1:56 pm

    Hi. I am president of a non-profit community theatre. Is there anyway I can get copy of some of these scripts for consideration. We are looking for a few different one acts. Thank you very much!

  22. #22 by Penny on September 15, 2021 - 6:52 pm

    Hello, Mr. Yancy. I am a Music/Theatre teacher for a local home-school co-op. I have about 40 students, kindergarten through grade 12. I am looking for royalty-free plays. I have edited a 30-min Christmas play I wrote for another school a couple years ago. I will use this play with half of my students. The cast of which will include one of my Theatre classes,…about 20 students (K-12)

    I am now in search of another 25 to 30 min play for my other 20 students, also grades K-12th grade.
    In looking for royalty-free scripts, I am finding a limited amount of plays that are well written and age-level appropriate. I was pleasantly surprised and excited to read descriptions of some of your work, however.
    If possible, I would be very interested is looking at a couple of your plays:
    On The 13th day of Christmas and Jose & Maria.

    Thank you!

  23. #23 by Amy on November 7, 2021 - 12:16 am

    Hello, I am the chairperson of a community theatre’s play reading committee. We came across your site and we are interested in considering Shakespeare’s Lost Christmas Play. We loved the description and would like to consider your play for the 2022-23 season. Thank you, Amy.

  24. #24 by Laura on December 10, 2021 - 7:44 am

    Hi how do I get copy of your plays

  25. #25 by Caleb Vaughn on January 25, 2022 - 8:03 pm

    Hello! I’m interested in reading “On The Thirteenth Day Of Christmas”! Please let me know how I may get a copy. Thank you!

  26. #26 by Destiny Schrock on August 19, 2022 - 4:33 pm

    Hello Mr. Yancey! First year theater director here 🙂 How may I view some of these scripts? Thank you!

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