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Recommended arts: '12 Steps to a More Dysfunctional Christmas,' 'A Texas Christmas Carol'

Staff Writer
Austin 360

Friday through Sunday

'12 Steps to a More Dysfunctional Christmas.' Quirky funnyman Rob Nash returns to the Vortex with his irreverent one-man account of one family's terribly dysfunctional Christmas. Part of Nash's 'Dysfunctional Family Saga,' the Christmas play follows the hilariously messed-up Smith family as they wrestle through the yuletide celebrations. 8 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Show continues 8 p.m. Dec. 31-Jan. 2. Vortex, 2307 Manor Road. $10-$30. 478-5282. www.vortexrep.org.

Tuesday and Wednesday

'A Texas Christmas Carol.' A traditional musical variety show, re-styled Austin-style. This 'Carol' features the familiar format of an old-fashioned variety show with an all-local line-up. On the roster (among others) are the Amazing Grace Gospel Choir, Austin Lyric Opera's 'Sing-A-Long 'Hallelujah' Chorus,' Ballet Austin's 'Nine-Minute Nutcracker,' River City Brass Quintet, Tapestry Dance Company, James Bowie High School Silver Stars, Tosca String Quartet and special musical guests Tish Hinojosa and the Biscuit Brothers. 7:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. Show continues: 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Jan. 1-2; 2 and 6 p.m. Jan. 3. Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Drive. $10-$60. 474-5664. www.thelongcenter.org. — Jeanne Claire van Ryzin