Best Bets for Fun Things to Do in and around La Jolla, Dec. 15-23
Two Nutcracker Ballets
The San Diego Symphony joins California Ballet for performances of the Tchaikovsky holiday tradition, 2:30 and 7 p.m. Dec. 17, Dec. 21-23; 1 and 5:30 p.m. Dec. 18 at San Diego Civic Theatre, 1100 Third Ave. Tickets $40-$80. (858) 560-6741. Californiaballet.org. The Nutcracker tells the story of a girl named Clara who is given a magical nutcracker doll on Christmas Eve. Later that evening, Clara encounters toy soldiers who have come to life to do fierce battle with giant mice before embarking on a journey through the Snow Kingdom and the Kingdom of Sweets.
Leaping Cossacks! Flurries of Snowflakes! And a Legion of Rats! See them all swoop and soar in the 22nd annual production from San Diego Ballet, Dec. 17-18 at Mandeville Auditorium at UCSD. Directed and choreographed by Robin Sherertz Morgan and Javier Velasco. La Jollan stars as Clara. Tickets $25-$45. (619) 294-7311. Sandiegoballet.org
This Week at the Library
• Broadway and film actor Duffy Hudson will play all 46 characters in ‘”A Christmas Carol,” without props or costumes, to bring the magical story to life for families, 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 14 at The Riford Library, 7555 Draper Ave. (858) 552-1657. Lajollalibrary.org
• The Wednesday Book Club will discuss “Little Bee,” at 1:15 p.m. Dec. 14.
• The teen drop-in event will have all materials provided for creating holiday cards from 3 to 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15.
• The Pen to Paper creative writing drop-in workshop runs noon to 1 p.m. Dec. 15. The Third Thursday Poetry Workshop meets at 2 p.m.
• Raggle Daggle will perform holiday music at 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17.
• Dr. Elisabeth Kotzakidou Pace will continue her lecture series on the cantatas of J.S., Bach at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18.
Alberto Blanco, one of Latin America’s most outstanding poets and artists (who earlier this year held a retrospective of his work at the Athenaeum Music & Arts Library) will read from his new book, “Afterglow/Tras El Rayo,” 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17 at D. G. Wills Books, 7461 Girard Ave. (858) 456-1800. Dgwillsbooks.com
The Improv Theatre of Los Angeles takes the stage in “An Unscripted Carol,” 7:30 p.m. Dec. 19-20 at North Coast Repertory Theatre, 987 Lomas Santa Fe Drive, Solana Beach. Tickets $20. (858) 481-1055, northcoastrep.org
Old World Beats
A sequence of seasonal motets and carols will be presented by Bach Collegium under the direction of Ruben Venezuela at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16 at St. James by-the-Sea Episcopal Church, 743 Prospect St., and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17 at St. Andrews Church, 1050 Thomas Ave., Pacific Beach. Each concert will be preceded by a 6:45 p.m. round-table discussion. Tickets $25-$40. Rush door tickets at $10 for students with ID. www.bachcollegiumsd.org/
New this year, “A Christmas Tabernacle,” comes to Liberty Station in Point Loma, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 16-18. There will be two entertainment stages, live reindeer, inflatables, cookie decorating, a model train display, carolers, horse and carriage rides, films and dances featuring local bands and choirs. Tickets $18-$12 at (888) 878-6652 and at the door.
(619) 754-9508. Achristmastabernacle.com
Billed as “a Christmas sing-along to life your spirits,” the San Diego Symphony with special guest singer John Pagano and area choirs will perform yuletide favorites, 8 p.m. Dec. 16-17, and 2 p.m. Dec. 17, and 2 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 18, Symphony Hall, 750 B. St. The guest violinist will be Robert McDuffie. Tickets (619) 235-0804. Sandiegosymphony.com
Bells and Voices
La Jolla United Methodist Church will present its Christmas concert, ‘He Is Born!’ 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18, at 6063 La Jolla Blvd. Guests will hear the Chancel and Dorian Bell choirs with strings, woodwinds, organ and piano directed by Bob Wuertz. The program will feature classical to 20th century works. A freewill offering will be accepted. Refreshments. (858) 454-7108. lajollaunitedmethodist.org
Robin Henkel (with Billy Watson and Gunnar Biggs) will sing and play the blues in an intimate atmosphere from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 17 at Birdrock Coffee Roasters, 5627 La Jolla Blvd. (858) 551-1707.
Take a cruise through French Polynesia when the La Jolla Photo Travelers Club presents Bob Andrews discussing his cruise on the Aranui III. Andrews visited parts of French Polynesia and the Marquesas where Paul Gaugin worked and died. The Aranui is part passenger, part cargo ship. The free presentation starts at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 19 at Wesley Palms, 2404 Loring St., east of Soledad Mountain Road in Pacific Beach.
Pass the Popcorn
The story of a schoolteacher’s struggle to teach violin to inner-city Harlem kids plays out in the 1999 film, “Music of the Heart,” screening at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 20 in the Riford Library Community Room, 7555 Draper Ave. The film stars Meryl Streep, Aidan Quinn, Gloria Estefan and Angela Bassett. It was director Wes Craven‘s only foray outside of the horror/thriller genre aside from his contribution to the directorially diverse “Paris, je t’aime.” It was also his only film nominated at the Academy Awards. (858) 552-1657.
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