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Short List

An A&E pocket guide for December

Brett Reighn

Magical Holidays
Saint Nick isn’t the only one who travels around the world in a single night—Clara and her Nutcracker-turned-Prince accomplish the same magical feat while dancing on their toes. The Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra joins the Orlando Ballet in presenting Tchaikovsky’s classic The Nutcracker. For a twist on this timeless favorite, Clare and the Chocolate Nutcracker is set in New Orleans at Mardi Gras and features a score by Tchaikovsky and Duke Ellington. Both performances are at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre. orlandoballet.org, clareand thechocolatenutcracker.net


Celebrate With a Splash
12/14 Think the holidays are all wet? Get your crew over to Dinky Dock for the Winter Park Festival of Lights Boat Parade. More than 60 residential and local-business-sponsored boats will light up Lakes Virginia and Osceola, following a ski show hosted by Rollins College. The Albin Polasek Museum and Sculpture Garden in Winter Park will host the official judging station with music, food, wine and parking. wpboatparade.com

Classic Christmas
You know the Christmas holidays are in full swing when the Bach Festival Choir and Orchestra performs holiday classics in the Knowles Memorial Chapel at Rollins College, under the direction of the artistic director and conductor John V. Sinclair. bachfestivalflorida.org

Love Triangle
12/6 & 12/8
Gian Carlo Menotti’s radio opera The Old Maid and the Thief will be staged in The Black Box at Orlando Repertory Theatre. Who will win the heart of the wandering thief—Miss Todd, the old maid, or Laetitia, her young housemaid? Meanwhile, Miss Pinkerton, the town gossip, is on the case. floperatheatre.org 




Let’s Go Bowling
The Russell Athletic Bowl pits the top non-BCS selection from the Big East conference against the second non-BCS selection from the Atlantic Coast Conference at the Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium. A few days later on Jan. 1, the stadium will again be packed for the Capital One Bowl. Stop by Orlando Bowl Week fan headquarters on International Drive for live music, inflatables, pep rallies and interactive games. russellathleticbowl.com, capitalonebowlgame.com

Nostalgic Favorite
Five actors play dozens of characters and produce all of the sound effects for It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play at the Orlando Shakespeare Theater. Have a listen as George Bailey, Clarence the Angel and the residents of Bedford Falls come to life as a live 1940s radio broadcast. orlandoshakes.org


Southern Shakes
Where do you land after performing at The White House, as well as appearing on Saturday Night Live and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon? If you’re Alabama Shakes, you celebrate with a fall headline concert tour that includes a stop in Orlando at Hard Rock Live. See for yourself if lead singer Brittany Howard is channeling Janis Joplin, Etta James, Bessie Smith or all three. hardrocklive.com

Ten Days (and Worlds) Apart

12/9 Seven-time Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter/musician John Mayer brings his Born and Raised Tour to the Amway Center to raise funds for and heighten awareness of the effects of post-traumatic stress on military veterans. Then, on Dec. 19, singer/actor Justin Timberlake sees his way clear with the 20/20 Experience World Tour—his first in six years. amwaycenter.com, ticketmaster.com


The Thrill Is Back
4 The King of the Blues (and Mayor of Bluesville) BB King and his best gal—er, guitar—Lucille have come a long way from the street corners of Memphis to perform at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre. orlandovenues.net


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