Florida Culture for Your HOLIDAY Calendar! Week of December 11, 2016 By Josh Garrick


Florida Culture for Your HOLIDAY Calendar! Week of December 11, 2016 By Josh Garrick 

TODAY – Dec 11 at 2 pm – One-Man Presentation of ‘A Christmas Carol’
TODAY at 2 pm is the final performance for David McElroy to play ALL 37 characters in his one-man presentation of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. In the tradition of the ancient story-teller, a look, a voice, a posture brings forth each character from Tiny Tim to the Three Ghosts – fascinating as the multi-talented Mr. McElroy goes forward sometimes changing characters without even taking a breath. This HIGHLY RECOMMENDED tour-de-force performance, with music, is at the Blue Bamboo Center at 1905 Kentucky Ave in Winter Park. Call 407.341.3495 or visit bluebambooartcenter.com/shows One-Man Presentation of A Christmas Carol

TODAY – Dec 11 at 7:30 pm – Maitland Symphony presents FREE Holiday Concert – ‘A Russian Christmas!’ 
Under the direction of Artistic Director Eric Mendez, The Maitland Symphony Orchestra will present their FREE holiday concert with an emphasis on Russian music. Called ‘A Russian Christmas!’ the ‘Nutcracker’ will be performed along with many other holiday favorites. Orlando Sentinel’s Scott Maxwell and MSO Founder Margaret Patten will co-emcee the FREE event at the Maitland Presbyterian Church at 341 N. Orlando Ave in Maitland. Call 321-303-1404Maitland Symphony presents FREE Holiday Concert – ‘A Russian Christmas!’

Dec 12 at 7 pm – “A Christmas Concerto” from the Orlando Philharmonic 
In what can only be described as a magnificent ‘Christmas Gift” to our community, beloved works chosen from Bach’s Brandenburg Concerti (No. 3) and Mozart’s Eine kleine Nachtmusik will ‘bookend’ Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4 and the charming ‘Christmas Concerto’ by Corelli. The program is offered by the Orlando Philharmonic in their new home – The Plaza Live. Guillaume Pirard will conduct, as our brilliant Concertmaster Rimma Bergeron-Langlois performs triple duty with her violin in this HIGHLY RECOMMENDED collusion of the Baroque and the Classical. Call 407.770.0071 or visit orlandophil.org 
“A Christmas Concerto” from the Orlando Philharmonic

December 12 at 7:30 pm – Sandler, Schneider, Spade, & Swardson LIVE in Orlando 
Live comedy fans, Saturday Night Live fans, and anyone who wants to spend an evening with the funniest people on Earth need to order their tickets for “Here Comes the Funny Tour” featuring Adam Sandler, David Spade, Nick Swardson, Rob Schneider & a special surprise guest on-stage LIVE at the Bob Carr Theater for ONE performance only on December 12. Now catch your breath and call 844.513.2014 or visit drphillipscenter.org for an evening with ADAM SANDLER, DAVID SPADE, NICK SWARDSON, ROB SCHNEIDER and a special surprise guest!!! Sandler, Schneider, Spade, & Swardson LIVE in Orlando

Dec 13 to 18 – Broadway in Orlando presents ‘An American in Paris’
‘An American in Paris’ is the new hit Broadway musical about an American solider, a mysterious French girl and PARIS, each yearning for a new beginning in the aftermath of World War II. Director-Choreographer-Tony Award-winner Christopher Wheldon brings the romance of Paris into perfect harmony with Tony Award-winning orchestrations of works by George and Ira Gershwin in this four-time Tony Award-winning production that earned more awards than any other musical in the 2014-2015 Broadway season. Call 844.513.2014 or visit drphillipscenter.org 
Broadway in Orlando presents ‘An American in Paris’

December 15 to 23 – ‘Dickens by Candlelight’ at the Shakespeare Center 
Feel like part of the production as actors speak beside you – or pour your tea – in my favorite re-telling of the Dickens’ classic. In the Robin Olson production, three actors portray dozens of characters as they move through and around the audience seated at treat-laden tables. John DiDonna, Morgan Russell, and Monica Tamborello portray all the roles, transforming themselves from character to character as ‘Dickens by Candlelight’ returns to the Shakespeare Center. Ask about their special December 15 Opening Night performance. For tickets, call 407.222.7669. ‘Dickens by Candlelight’ at the Shakespeare Center

Dec 17 at 1 pm – It’s Tuba (and Euphonium) Christmas Time in Winter Park 
Conceived in 1974 by Harvey Phillips as a tribute to his teacher and mentor William J. Bell, (born on Christmas Day 1902), TubaChristmas Concerts honor all great teachers who pass on high performance standards. Ironically, the music performed at the first TubaChristmas (1974) was arranged by American composer Alec Wilder who died on Christmas Eve 1980. The Free Concert will take place at the Winter Park Band Shell Stage in Central Park with Michael Garasi conducting. Gail Robertson will Guest Conduct. Call 407.970.2211
It’s Tuba (and Euphonium) Christmas Time in Winter Park

Dec 17 from 2 pm to 4 pm – Artist Josh Garrick Book Signing at Bloomingdale’s 
Hosted by the Orlando Downtown Arts District and Bloomingdale’s at the Mall of Millenia, the Public is invited to an ‘Artist’s Book Signing’ featuring the artwork of Orlando’s own Josh Garrick on the 3rd floor showroom at Bloomingdale’s. The store supports the arts by allowing viewers to imagine owning the Artists' work in their homes with a percentage of all art sales donated to the Downtown Arts District. Play a form of “Art Treasure Hunt” and you could WIN an autographed copy of Josh Garrick’s book from his historic exhibition at the Archaeological Museum of Greece. Call 407.415.9511 or visit Josh Garrick on Facebook. 
 Artist Josh Garrick Book Signing at Bloomingdale’s
 Artist Josh Garrick Book Signing at Bloomingdale’s

Dec 17 at 5 pm – ‘BAH’ – A Free Holiday Story at the Alfond
With a warm welcome from the beautiful Alfond Hotel, children (and their guests) are invited to a ‘Holiday Story-Time’ including scenes from ‘A Christmas Carol’ as told by Peter Travis with James Hartsfield on the piano. If the children are VERY good, Hot Chocolate, Gingerbread Cookies, Eggnog and Warm Cider may be on the ‘menu.’ I’ve even heard the jolly “Old Man” himself has been known to ‘chill’ at the Alfond. This event is offered as a Free Gift from the Alfond to children of the neighborhood. 
‘BAH’ – A Free Holiday Story at the Alfond

Dec 17 at 7 pm -- Central Florida Sounds of Freedom Band’s ‘HOLIDAZE Concert’
In the spirit of the Holidays, we are ALL invited to join the ‘Central Florida Sounds of Freedom Band’ as they don their gay apparel to play holiday tunes to CELEBRATE the season. Orlando’s own LGBT+ Concert Band and Color Guard will present their winter concert “Holidaze” at the Orlando Repertory Theatre in Loch Haven Park. With the goal to” unite, serve and educate through music, entertainment and the arts,” the Concert will also include “a sparkling silent auction.” Tickets are $10 at the door or online at CFSOF.com – kids 12 and under FREE.
Central Florida Sounds of Freedom Band’s ‘HOLIDAZE Concert’

Dec 17 & 18 -- The Central Florida Ballet Nutcracker
The Central Florida Ballet's Nutcracker is the “FUN” Nutcracker. Taking a hint from local theme parks, Central Florida Ballet merged the Nutcracker fairytale with a touch of Cirque and a burst of pyrotechnics creating an unforgettable experience for the whole family. CFB's production was recognized as 'one of the top five productions in the nation' by CNN and has become known to many as the ‘pyrotechnic Nutcracker’ thanks to it's coverage in USA Today. In performance at the Orange County Convention Center, visit centralfloridaballet.com The Central Florida Ballet Nutcracker

Dec 18 -- Orlando Philharmonic Presents FREE Outdoor Holiday Concert
The Orlando Philharmonic will present the Free, Family-Friendly ‘Dr. Phillips Charities Outdoor Concert’ on December 18 getting underway at 12 noon in Winter Park’s Central Park. Pre-concert children’s activities include ‘Instrument Try-Out Stations’ and ‘Mr. Richard and the Pound Hounds’ at 12:30 pm. The Orlando Philharmonic, with Conductor Christopher Confessore, will take the stage at 1:30 pm to perform ‘Peter and the Wolf’ and Holiday favorites. The program honors the legacy of Della Phillips. Call 407-770-0071 or visit orlandophil.org
 Orlando Philharmonic Presents FREE Outdoor Holiday Concert

Dec 18 at 2 and 7 pm – Opera Orlando presents ‘Amahl and the Night Visitors’ 
Giancarlo Menotti's opera "Amahl and the Night Visitors" tells the story of a crippled shepherd boy whose life changes forever when he sees an amazing star. Three kings, who are following the star, encounter Amahl and his mother and the result is both humorous and inspiring while delivering a message of how unselfish love can work miracles. Ola Rafalo stars as the Mother, Robin Jensen conducts, and Eric Pinder directs for this Opera Orlando production at the Dr. Phillips Center. Call 844.513.2014 or visit drphillipscenter.org Opera Orlando presents ‘Amahl and the Night Visitors’

NOW to Dec 18 – Harry Connick Jr’s ‘The Happy Elf’ at Orlando Rep 
From the Grammy-winning musician, this joyous new musical is about the happiest elf at the North Pole. He is SO HAPPY that his constant exuberance wears others out, BUT if he can restore ‘JOY’ to the town of Bluesville, he will win a spot on Santa’s sleigh. Faith and teamwork are gifts to be shared in this story, and Harry Connick, Jr. has written a wonderful score. Experience the Orlando Rep’s Holiday offering by calling 407.896.7365 or visiting orlandorep.com  Harry Connick Jr’s The Happy Elf at Orlando Rep

NOW to Dec 18 – George Bernard Shaw’s ‘Pygmalion’ at the Mad Cow Theatre 
Yes – this is the George Bernard Shaw play that gave us ‘My Fair Lady’ – performed as Shaw wrote it. Without the songs, we get to clearly see Shaw’s observations on the British class system, gender stereotypes, and ‘middle-class morality.’ Shaw’s most popular play gave us the characters of Henry Higgins and Eliza Doolittle in this Holiday treat from the elves at Mad Cow Theatre. Call 407.297.8788 or visit madcowtheatre.com George Bernard Shaw’s ‘Pygmalion’ at the Mad Cow Theatre

NOW to Dec 30 – Orlando Shakes’ ‘EVERY Christmas Story Ever Told’ 
As an audience member you will LOVE the moment when the rehearsal for ‘yet another’ production of "A Christmas Carol" devolves into an irreverent look at ALL of our favorite ‘Holiday Classics’ including ‘Wonderful Life,’ Frosty, Rudolph, Charlie Brown, and more! Three actors (with the help of Santa) take a tongue in cheek look at everything from Dickens to Dr. Seuss in the funniest satire you may ever experience – in ANY season. I LOVE THIS SHOW and recommend it highly. At Orlando Shakes, call 407.447.1700 or visit orlandoshakes.org Orlando Shakes’ ‘EVERY Christmas Story Ever Told’


Josh Garrick is the Florida Arts Editor for Wandering Educators