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Tom Nattell

If you’ve been in Albany for any length of time, you’ve likely encountered Tom Nattell. He’s been an important part of the local arts-and-social justice scene for decades. A poet, columnist (in this paper) and activist, Nattell hosted Rock Against Reaganomics concerts in Washington Park—back when fun stuff like that was allowed in Washington Park—in the 1980s, and Readings Against the End of the World in the ’80s and ’90s. He ran a monthly open mic for poets at QE2, started Poets Action Against AIDS and runs the Poets in the Park series every summer at the Robert Burns statue in Washington Park. He traveled the country in the poets’ trio 3 Guys >From Albany. He’s the man.

If you haven’t heard Tom read his poems in a while, or, if you’re a newcomer and haven’t heard him yet, tonight’s the night. Nattell will be the top-billed poet at tonight’s event at the Lark Street Bookshop. Stop by and say hello.

The Poetry Motel Foundation will present Tom Nattell as featured poet tonight (Thursday, Dec. 16) at 7:30 PM at the Lark Street Bookshop (215 Lark St., Albany). The sign-up for the poet’s open mic portion of the evening starts at 7 PM. Suggested donation is $3. For more information, call 465-8126.

Corcraft

What do you get when you mix a legendary indie-rock guitar-hero, a renowned electric flautist, a Kamikaze Heart, an idiosyncratic mad- scientist type, and a drummer who has played with more local bands than you can count on both hands? We’re not sure either, but we’ll all find out together this weekend when the band known as Corcraft make their debut. Word has it the collective was born of some free-form open-mic jamming between ex-Mercury Rev flautist (and current Trojan) Suzanne Thorpe, Troy Pohl (on lap-steel guitar), and Jason Martin (on something he calls “reel-to-reel tape-deck bass”). Thorpe later called in old friend (and Dinosaur Jr. brain) J Mascis to bring his guitar wizardry to the mix, Al Kash was recruited on traps, and the lineup was complete. Expect the unexpected (or, take the proper drugs): Corcraft’s performances are largely improvised.

Corcraft will perform at King’s Tavern (241 Union Ave., Saratoga Springs) tomorrow (Friday, Dec. 17), with special guest S.T.A.C. Tickets for the 9 PM performance are $8. For more information, call the club at 581-7090.

Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker

The many performances of The Nutcracker that occur with the coming of the season are inevitable. A whole lot of groups perform the holiday classic, and while we expect that audiences’ hearts will be warmed no matter what show they attend, we wanted to let you know about the Palace Theatre’s production this year: As a special treat, the Moscow Ballet will be in town to give two performances of The Nutcracker on Saturday.

The Moscow Ballet, easily one of the best companies in the world, is made up of 50 dancers aged 19 to 30, all graduates from the Moscow Choreographic Institute and the Vaganova Institute. More than a dozen have even won international competitions, including laureates of the IBCs of Paris, Moscow, Luzerne, and Osaka, among others.

The Moscow Ballet will perform the Great Russian Nutcracker at the Palace Theatre (19 Clinton Ave., Albany) on Saturday, Dec. 18, at 2 and 7:30 PM. Tickets for this event are $47, $32 and $22. For more information, call the theater at 465-3334.


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