Arts & Culture

WHAT’S UP, MAESTRO?: Most of us were introduced to classical music by classic cartons, so why not relive those magical moments when Philadelphia Orchestra performs live the world’s most beloved Looney Tunes shorts as part of “Bugs Bunny At The Symphony II,” Jan. 4-6 at Kimmel’s Verizon Hall, 300 S. Broad St. For more information or tickets, call 215-893-1999.

The Philadelphia comedy theater company 1812 Productions’ “This is The Week That Is” has become the go-to show in which to discuss all matters of political, social and cultural discourse — good and bad, but mostly bad, local and national news — with a critical, witty and caustically humorous eye. Think “The Daily Show” with music, and you get the picture. So heralded is the variety show-like “This is The Week That Is” that The American Theatre Wing (the creators of the Tony Awards who support excellence and education in theatre) has given 1812 a handsome grant to film a documentary on its news-based showcase. Two of the show’s most prominent members — co-director and writer Dan O’Neill, actor-singer-pianist Rob Tucker — are out and longtime 1812 collaborators, working alongside company artistic director Jen Childs, sat down with PGN to talk about how to make LGBTQ news funny, fresh and relevant. 

DRAG QUEENS STIRRING ALL THROUGH THE HOUSE: Twas the night before Christmas and nothing will be remotely quiet as “RuPaul’s Drag Race” alum Alexis Michelle teams up with Brittany Lynn, Satine Harlow and DJ Carl Michaels for “Oy to the World,” a drag show and dance party for people of the Jewish faith and their allies, 9 p.m. Dec. 24 at Tabu, 200 S. 12th St. For more information or tickets, call 215-964-9675.

Writer-director Barry Jenkins follows up his Oscar-winning “Moonlight” with another masterful film, “If Beale Street Could Talk.” Adapted from a 1974 novel by out gay writer James Baldwin, the film opens with a quote from the author about how African-Americans are part of a vibrant, marginalized community. It’s a fitting passage for a film about a couple facing a series of joys and hardships.

“Applause? I’d love some!” That’s the way this week’s Portrait, Eric Jaffe, starts his monthly cabaret, “The Eric Jaffe Show.” In addition to his regular performances, the multi-talented Jaffe can soon be seen for one night only in “Oy, to the World,” a dance party for “people of Jewish faith and their allies.” The event will include music by DJ Carl Michaels, comedy and live performances starring Jaffe, the fabulous Brittany Lynn, Satine Harlow and Alexis Michelle from “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” 

 

It seems like every genre of music from country to hard rock has gotten in on the holiday-concert game, almost to the point where nothing seems exciting, unique or revolutionary anymore. Thankfully, Everett Bradley’s Holidelic is running Santa’s sleigh through the funk gauntlet to get rumps shaking yet again this holiday season.

IT’S A FAMILY AFFAIR: Grammy-nominated singer songwriter Jewel is hitting the road for a series of special shows where she performs a combination of holiday classics, holiday originals and her hit songs alongside special guests: her father, Atz, and her brothers, Atz Lee and Nikos Kilcher, 8 p.m. Dec. 15 at The Tower Theater, 69th and Ludlow streets. For more information or tickets, call 610-352-2887.

We’re less than two weeks out from Christmas and sure enough, you still have no idea what to get a lot of people on your list, right?

When all else fails, books and music are usually a can’t-miss gift. Who doesn’t love a good coffee-table book? Fortunately, there are a decent number of new releases this holiday season.

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