I wonder if the Shakespeare Tavern's making a little joke about New Year's resolutions by staging DOCTOR FAUSTUS, continuing Sun., JAN. 4. Christopher Marlowe's classic treatment of Faustus' satanic deal for knowledge and power just might make people think twice before they commit to overly ambitious regimens in 2009. Director Jeff Watkins revisits the two-actor, 90-minute "concept" production of the play and casts reliable regulars Maurice Ralston as Faustus and Laura Cole as the shape-shifting demon, Mephistopheles. Through Jan. 25. $12. Thurs.-Sat., 7:30 p.m.; Sun., 6:30 p.m.; 11 p.m. performances Jan. 2, 3, 9 and 10. The New American Shakespeare Tavern, 499 Peachtree St. 404-874-5299. www.shakespearetavern.com.