Send your Victorian-era best to the cleaners, because Dickens on The Strand returns this weekend.Photo by Illumine Photographic Services, Courtesy of Galveston Historical Foundation
The holiday festivities continue this week with a Dickensian transformation hitting Galveston’s historic Strand, the city’s official tree lighting, and all the Tchaikovsky you could want (courtesy of the Houston Symphony). But there’s also a bit of film noir, Disney, and spontaneous theater, too. Keep reading for the full list of this week’s best bets.
If you also believe you can never hear “The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” too many times, you’ll want to check out this weekend’s Houston Symphony concert, Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker + Gil Shaham. Music Director Andrés Orozco-Estrada will be at the helm for a program that includes excerpts from Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s classic score, Florence Price’s Dances in the Canebrakes, and Samuel Barber’s Violin Concerto and Giovanni Bottesini’s Gran duo concertante – both featuring guest violinist Gil Shaham. Performances are set for 8 p.m. Friday, December 3, and Saturday, December 4, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, December 5. In-hall (Jones Hall, that is) tickets are available here for $29 to $144, or you can purchase access to a livestream of Saturday night’s concert here for $20.
If that wasn’t enough, on Saturday, December 4, at 10 and 11:30 a.m., Orozco-Estrada will return to the Jones Hall stage to open the Symphony’s Family Series with Musical Treats from The Nutcracker ─ for Kids! At this family-friendly program, you can enjoy Tchaikovsky’s music with a narrator and host, local actor Juan Sebastian Cruz. You can expect a special appearance by Santa Claus, as well as a mailbox in the Jones Hall lobby to drop off letters to Santa. In-person tickets are available here for $29 or you can view a livestream of the 11:30 a.m. performance for $20.
Cone Man Running Productions celebrates 10 years with the 14th edition of Spontaneous Smattering.
Photo by Christine Weems
Cone Man Running Productions is celebrating their tenth anniversary this year, and a gift of tin or aluminum seems apt if only for its usefulness on a night like Saturday, December 4, when they present Spontaneous Smattering XIV. Once again, playwrights will be handed themes and randomly draw two actors. The next day, each playwright hands the short script they created overnight to the actors who have to find props, costumes and, oh yeah, learn their lines for back-to-back shows that very night. Shows are set for 7 and 9:30 p.m. at Spring Street Studios, and be ready to vote for favorites in categories like “Cast That Look Like They Had the Most Fun.” $20 tickets are available here and benefit the Houston Food Bank.
The Disney Renaissance comes alive over at Theatre Under the Stars on Tuesday, December 7, when they open an all-new production of Disney’s The Little Mermaid at The Hobby Center. Delphi Borich, who plays Ariel, tells us she admires the courage of her character, seeing to find her place in a new world. Directed by TUTS Artistic Director Dan Knechtges, the musical will include the music you love from eight-time Oscar winner Alan Menken and lyricist Howard Ashman – such as “Part of Your World,” “Under the Sea,” and “Kiss the Girl” – and the Doug Wright’s book will again tell the tale of a young mermaid who gives up her voice for some legs to walk on land and get a shot at a prince (and learns some lessons along the way). The musical will run through December 24, and you can get tickets here for $40 to $136.
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