Thursday, 7 p.m.
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Bring a boom box or other sort of portable CD or mp3-playing sound device to this participatory sound sculpture, orchestrated by Phil Kline, and be a part of the art. Each participant will receive or have already downloaded one of four parts of Kline’s piece. Then everyone hits “play” at the same time, and epic-ness results.
The Big Bang Project
Thursday and Friday
1400 N. American St.
Artist Ezra Masch created this installation that uses a computer intermediary to convert sound from a drum set into light displayed on a grid of fluorescent lamps. He calls this audio-visual instrument it a “light organ.” We wouldn’t recommend it if your brain has trouble with a lot of flashing lights, but for everyone else, it’ll be pretty mind-blowing.
Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis
Sunday, 8 p.m.
1500 Walnut St.
Wynton Marsalsis, not only a great trumpet player but a great lover of jazz history, leads the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra through works by big band masters Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Bennie Goodman and Tommy Dorsey. They’ll be joined by singer Cecile McLorin Salvant, who’s been compared to such legends as Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald.
Sunday, 3 p.m.
Ethical Society Building
1906 Rittenhouse Square
Munier Mandolin and Guitar Orchestra performs this holiday concert with a special guest singer, soprano Ana Maria Diaz. The 20-member ensemble features three varieties of mandolin: the standard mandolin, the slightly larger, deeper-toned mandola and the big, low-toned mandocello. Together they have a lovely, twinkly sound, putting a plucked folksy spin on the classical string repertoire.
A Night for Jack Rose
Friday, 8 p.m.
4014 Walnut St.
Musicians including Glenn Jones, Nathan Bowles, Daniel Bachman, Chris Forsyth, the Megajam Booze Band and DJs Ian Nagoski and Michael Chaiken will pay tribute to late Philly guitar virtuoso Jack Rose, who died in 2009 at the age of 38. His terribly early death was truly a loss for the guitar world — such a powerful player doesn’t come along often.
1.1 Holiday Revue Special
2040 Christian St.
This show looks back at 20 years of Junk, the wildly inventive, acrobatic dance company led by Brain Sanders, with numbers from their children’s show “Skink” and several pieces from their FringeArts Festival shows, plus previews looking ahead to new work. They’re called Junk because of Sanders’ use of found objects, but their gutsy talent is anything but.
Friday through Sunday
2030 Sansom St.
Definitely do not take your kids to this burlesque “Nutcracker,” presented by the Cabaret Administration — it’s for adults only. With a plot revolving around two sisters, one shy and one extraverted, the surreal production promises, according to the troupe, “both terrifying and erotic moments, impressive ballerinas and lavish sensual costumes.” Strange toys are also hinted at, but we’ll leave that to your imagination.
Friday and Saturday
2023 Sansom St.
This 1960 Billy Wilder film, starring Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine, takes place in a philandering world that’ll be very familiar to “Mad Men” fans. Lemmon plays a corporate schlep who loans out his apartment for his bosses’ affairs in the hopes of winning a promotion. It’s all going fine until he discovers one of these affairs involves his crush, Fran.
Craft and Disorder Holiday Artisan Show
Sunday, noon to 6 p.m.
Eris Temple Arts
5209 Walton Ave.
This West Philly craft fair, held at an arts collective, looks like it’ll feature a somewhat more “alternative” aesthetic than the average crafts fair, if you get our drift. Its vendors will be offering clothes, jewelry, various objet d’art, comics and ‘zines. There will also be live music and vegetarian food from Black Orchid Foods.
‘Beauty and the Beast’
Through Feb. 1
Arden Theatre Company
40 N. Second St.
Those familiar with Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” will find this version by Charles Way quite different. The setting is England instead of France, and Belle had a sister, Cassandra, and it’s Cassandra who’s the free spirit, while Belle is more timid, but possesses the gift of clairvoyance. But there’s still a Beastly prince whose curse can only be broken by love.
‘Holidays on Ice’
Society Hill Playhouse
507 S. 8th St.
Actors Michelle Pauls and Paul Zielinski will perform David Sedaris monologues about the holiday season, full, as always, of the writer’s signature savage wit and eye for the absurd. Christmas has been a rich source of inspiration for Sedaris, from his breakthrough piece “The Santaland Diaries” to his bewildered description of Dutch traditions in “Six to Eight Black Men.”
Hang On with Aaron Nevins
Friday, 8 p.m.
2030 Sansom St.
Comedian Aaron Nevins presents a holiday edition of his live Johnny Carson-esque chat show. Special guests include indie rock drummer Jon Wurster of the Mountain Goats and Superchunk and former American Idol Justin Guarini (if you’re wondering where he’s been, the answer is all over Broadway). Nevins’ trio of comic panelists this time includes R. Eric Thomas, Christian Alsis and Kate Banford.