Plenty of music, a dance you can do and a one-woman ‘Christmas Carol’ provide holiday cheer this week
“Noel: An Early Christmas Eurotour”
Nationally acclaimed historical harpist Therese Honey joins the Texas Early Music Project for a holiday-themed concert of music from medieval England, Renaissance Italy and Flanders as well as baroque England and France. Featured soloists include award-winning Austin vocalists Jenifer Thyssen and Stephanie Prewitt. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday at First English Lutheran Chuch, 3001 Whitis Ave., 3 p.m. Sunday at First Presbyterian Church, 8001 Mesa Drive. $15-$25) 377-6961, www.early-music.org.
“The Manhattan Transfer Swings the Holidays”
The 12-time Grammy-winning jazz vocal group performs an evening of familiar and well-loved holiday classics. 8 p.m. Wednesday. Bass Concert Hall, University of Texas campus, 2350 Robert Dedman Drive. $10-$60. 477-6060, www.texasperformingarts.com.
“The Invincible Czars’ Dance-It-Yourself Nutcracker”
It doesn’t get more fun and wacky than this.
Austin’s madcap and creative classic rock band the Invincible Czars presents its whimsical but rich version of Tchaikovsky’s “Nutcracker Suite” in a live version complete with lights, props and dancers and invites all kids young and old to dance along in the hilarity. The Czars will have you two-stepping to a countrified “Miniature Overture” and swinging to saccharin jazzy “Waltz of the Flowers” and spinning to a very psychedelic version of “Sugar Plum Fairy.”
The band has also re-vamped popular holiday carols that they’ll unleash with their signature guitar-heavy craziness. Audience members are invited to dress up for the family-friendly, all-ages show, with prizes going to the best holiday outfit and best costume. 3 p.m. Sunday. Austin Scottish Rite Theatre, 207 W. 18th St. $5, children; $10, adults, $20 groups of four. www.brownpapertickets.com/event/298210
Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol”
Storyteller and actress Bernadette Nason presents her singular performance of Dickens’ Victorian Christmas tale, performing all the roles in a one-woman tour-de-force. 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Bastrop Opera House, 711 Spring St., Bastrop. $5-$10. (512) 321-6283, www.bastropoperahouse.com.
Holiday Concert and Dedication of Aeolian-Skinner Organ
The University of Texas’ Butler School of Music recently aquired a restored Aeolian-Skinner Organ with more than 1,800 pipes for the historic Jessen Auditorium. Celebrated organist and UT professor Judith Hancock will be featured in the concert which also includes holiday-related music. Other soloists include baritone David Small, violist Roger Myers and trumpet player Nicnolas Kunkle. The concert will also be webcast live at www.music.utexas.edu. 7:30 p.m. Friday. Jessen Auditorium, Rainey Hall, Whitis Ave. $5-$10. 472-5401. www.music.utexas.edu.