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It’s kind of like wassailing. Upon slaughtering the ceremonial yule goat, hard-rock veterans Clutch love to come through town right around the holidays to help us shift gears (see what we did there?) from Christmas merriment to New Year’s debauchery. For this we are thankful and gladly raise our wassail bowl.

Along for the ride (groan) are two more party-hearty Southern bands, eager to get a taste of real winter. Kylesa are a sludgy female-fronted dual-drummer act who might just be the dictionary definition of badass. And Righteous Fool are stuck in 1976 for all the right reasons. And Clutch, well, they’re still doing the thing that put them on the road map (OK, we’ll stop). Their most recent, Strange Cousins From the West, is testament.

Clutch will come to Northern Lights (1208 Route 146, Clifton Park) on Tuesday (Dec. 28) at 8 PM. Tickets are $25. Call 371-0012 for more info.

Paris 1890—Unlaced!

Last spring, the Berkshires were fully steeped in Parisian flair—just after the Clark wrapped their exhibition Toulouse-Lautrec and Paris, Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum opened Paris 1890—Unlaced! The one-woman play, commissioned by Ventfort Hall in collaboration with Shakespeare & Company, was hailed by Berkshire Living as “A tour-de-force . . . wholesale triumph.”

Over one comical hour, actress Anne Undeland, veteran of the one-actor form, creates six women (museum director, courtesan, benefactor, milliner, American abroad and Montmartre nightclub star), invokes the lively and risqué Paris of the Belle Époque, and weaves a mystery that intertwines them all.

You may have missed your chance to see the acclaimed Toulouse-Lautrec exhibit, but Paris 1890—Unlaced returns this week for eight saucy performances. A perfect way to keep the “Ooh La La” of Christmas alive a little longer.

Paris 1890—Unlaced! opens at Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum (104 Walker St., Lenox, Mass.) on Sunday (Dec. 26) at 4 PM and runs through Jan. 2, 2011. Tickets are $25, $40 for the New Year’s Eve performance, which includes a festive champagne reception with actress and playwright; there will be a TalkBack with the same following the Dec. 28 performance. For more info, or to purchase tickets, call (413) 637-3206.

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