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A Christmas Carol

Thanksgiving dinner will wind to a close, you’ll nod into a cozy tryptophan slumber, and when you wake, the Christmas season officially will have begun. If clubbing someone’s grandmother over the head for a Zhu Zhu Pet isn’t your idea of a delightful holiday kickoff, Proctors is offering up a more tender, but still chilling, Yuletide tradition: A Christmas Carol.

The folks at Nebraska Theatre Caravan have been performing Charles Dickens’ sentimental Christmas ghost story on Thanksgiving weekend for more than three decades, and this time, they’re stopping in Schenectady on their national tour.

Think you already know the story back and forth? It doesn’t matter. According to the Los Angeles Times, Nebraska Theatre Caravan offer a rare production “that makes you feel you’re seeing and hearing the story for the first time” with “lavish sets and costumes and Broadway-spectacle designs.” (Like what’s on display here.)

Nebraska Theatre Caravan’s A Christmas Carol comes to Proctors (Mainstage, 432 State St., Schenectady) on Tuesday (Nov. 30) for a family-friendly show at 7 PM. Tickets range from $20 to $35. For more info, or to purchase tickets, call 346-6204.

A Christmas Story

If your holiday traditions skew more toward the dysfunctional modern classic, A Christmas Story is probably the show for you.

The 1983 movie based on Jean Shepherd’s book has spawned a proliferation of pink bunny suits and tasseled leg lamps. Folks who delight in the nostalgia, kitsch, memories and familiar imperfection of little Ralphie Parker’s holiday anecdotes tune in to 24-hour cable TV marathons, tour the A Christmas Story house and gather at A Christmas Story conventions.

The cult hit has since been adapted into a Broadway musical and a stage play, and this Christmas, Capital Repertory Theatre is gifting audiences with a live performance of the favorite tale. So zip up your bunny suit and strap on your hunter’s cap. Just don’t shoot your eye out!

A Christmas Story opens for preview at Capital Repertory Theatre (111 S. Pearl St., Albany) at 8 PM on Friday (Nov. 26) with a special pay-what-you-will performance, and runs through Jan. 2; the opening night performance will be on Dec. 8 at 7:30 PM, and will feature pre-show entertainment and a dessert and champagne reception following the performance. Tickets range from $28 to $53. For more info, or to purchase tickets, call 445-7469.

Matisyahu

What better way to celebrate the first night of Hanukkah than with the world’s most famous (er, only) Hasidic reggae star?

The Festival of Light brings Brooklyn’s Matisyahu to town on a tour of the same name. It’s also a fitting showcase for the singer-beatboxer’s latest material, released last year as Light. By now the sheer novelty of Matisyahu’s combined faith and musical style has pretty much worn off, revealing an accomplished musician with considerable vocal talent and a keen ear for pop songcraft. With versatile instrumentalists Dub Trio behind him, he’s taken his sound in an anthemic hip-hop direction, using the stage to spread a message of cross- cultural peace.

Matisyahu and Dub Trio come to Northern Lights (1208 Route 146, Clifton Park) on Wednesday (Dec. 1) at 9 PM. Tickets are $25. Call 371-0012 for more info.


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