Beautiful forecast for holiday events
Fiddler on the Roof
Opening Friday, Dec. 4, at 7:30 at the Downtown Cabaret Main Stage Theatre in Bridgeport is the classic musical Fiddler on the Roof, starring Lou Ursone (courtesy of Actors Equity) as Tevye and Karen Hanley as Golde. The show, part of the theater’s 40th anniversary season, will be presented on Fridays at 7:30, Saturdays at 5 and 8:15, and Sundays at 5 through Dec. 20.
Ticket prices are $21-$28; reservations may be made at mycabaret.org or by calling 203-576-1636 x0. The theater is at 263 Golden Hill Street in Bridgeport.
Holiday House Tour
Five Ridgefield homes plus the newly renovated Lounsbury House (Ridgefield Community Center) will be open for tours on Friday, Dec. 4, from 9 to 3, with ticket sales benefitting the Tiger Hollow sports complex at Ridgefield High School. The cost in advance online at tigerhollow.com, or at Squash’s, Bella Home or The Gilded Nest in Ridgefield, is $55.
On the day of the tour, tickets ($60) will be available at the Community Center, 316 Main Street.
Christmas Tree Festival
The historic Burr Homestead at 739 Old Post Road in Fairfield will be decorated for the holidays this weekend, with rooms designed by local interior decorators and artists and trees, wreaths and decorative items throughout the mansion available for sale. The Holiday Boutique will have gifts and ornaments and Santa will be on hand to greet children.
The festival is a benefit for Norwalk Grassroots Tennis, with a number of special events planned, including celebrity guests Gigi Fernandez on Friday, Dec. 4, from 5 to 7 p.m. at a children’s event and Patrick McEnroe on Saturday’s Holiday Gala from 7 to 10 p.m.
General hours are 10 to 7 on Friday, 10 to 5 on Saturday, and 10 to 4 on Sunday; a Sip ‘n’ Shop Preview will take place this evening, Thursday, Dec. 3, from 7 to 9 p.m.
For more information, visit fairfieldchristmastreefestival.org.
Trees and trains
Also in Fairfield, the Town Green tree lighting will take place Friday, Dec. 4, and the Fairfield Museum, 370 Beach Road, just off the green, will open the Holiday Express Train Show with a reception from 5 to 8:30 p.m. Opening night admission is $3 per person or $10 for a group or family of four; children 5 and younger will be admitted free.
The train show will continue through Jan. 3 and may be seen from 10 to 4 on weekends and 11 to 1 on weekdays. For more information, visit fairfieldhistory.org or call 203-259-1598.
Thousands of townspeople and friends will fill the Main Street area of Ridgefield on Friday evening, Dec. 4, as the annual Ridgefield Holiday Stroll gets underway at 6 p.m. There will be holiday cheer and special events in the stores, and along Main Street and side streets, free horse and carriage rides, music and other entertainment, ice sculpture and more. On Friday evening, there will be a Living Nativity produced by Jesse Lee Memorial United Methodist Church on the steps of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, 351 Main Street. The free 20-minute performance will begin at 7 p.m.
Special stroll events will continue Saturday, Dec. 5, among them, a performance by Jerry Steichen, the Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra’s music director and conductor, with Kathleen Theisen, RSO keyboardist, T.D. Ellis, RSO bassoonist, and Rachel Handman, concertmaster for the RSO’s evening Holiday Pops concert at Ridgefield High School (information, 203-438-3889).
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The New Canaan Holiday Stroll also begins Friday, Dec. 4, from 5 to 9, with a tree lighting and guest appearance by Santa and special events in the stores. The stroll events continue Saturday from 10 to 4 in downtown New Canaan, with entertainment, a Gingerbread House Tour, ice sculpture and more.
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The Downtown Milford Lamplight Stroll takes place on Friday, Dec. 4, from 5:30 to 9 p.m., with holiday cheer and entertainment in the Milford shops, carriage rides, special holiday window displays and more. For information, visit downtownmilfordct.com.
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Greenwich’s Holiday Stroll, complete with Santa and reindeer, horse-drawn carriage rides and entertainment, is set for Saturday, 10-6, and Sunday, noon to 5, along Greenwich Avenue.
Do You See?
The Loft Artists Association’s holiday show, Do You See What I See?, will highlight many individual interpretations of a single still-life arrangement — drawn, painted, photographed, sculpted, or collaged in the artist’s personal style. The show will open Friday, Dec. 4, with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. in the LAA’s East Gallery at 575 Pacific Street. It will be on view, with a portion of sales supporting Laurel House in Stamford, from Dec. 5 to 20. Gallery hours are 1 to 4:30 on Saturdays and Sundays; for more information, visit loftartists.com or call 203-247-2027.
The Danbury Concert Chorus and Danbury Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Christine R. Howlett, will perform Handel’s Messiah on Friday, Dec. 4, at 7:30 at the First Congregational Church, 164 Deer Hill Avenue, Danbury. The performance features soloists Regina Krawiec, soprano, Drew Minter, countertenor, James Ruff, tenor, and Paul M. Speiser, baritone.
For more information, visit danburymusiccentre.org or call 203-748-1716.
The Happy Elf
The Town Players of New Canaan will present the area of premier of Harry Connick Jr.’s The Happy Elf, a family musical, this weekend and next at the Powerhouse Performing Arts Center in Waveny Park, 679 South Avenue, New Canaan. Connick, who lives in New Canaan, has written more than a dozen songs to tell the story of Eubie, the happiest elf at the North Pole.
Performances of The Happy Elf will take place Fridays, Dec. 4 and 11, at 8 p.m., Saturdays, Dec. 5 and 12, at 2:30, and Sundays, Dec. 6 and 13, at 2:30 p.m. For tickets, call 203-966-7371 or order online at tpnc.org.
Salute to Sinatra
In celebration of Frank Sinatra’s 100th birthday this month, vocalist and guitarist John Pizzarelli will perform a concert of Sinatra’s greatest hits on Friday, Dec. 4, at 8 p.m. at the Palace Theatre, 61 Atlantic Street, Stamford.
Tickets range from $25 to $65 and may be reserved at 203-325-4466 or palacestamford.org.
A family musical, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, will open Friday, Dec. 4, at 8 p.m. at the Sherman Playhouse, 5 Route 39 North, Sherman, and run four weekends through Dec. 27. Shows will be at 8 on Fridays and Saturdays and at 2 on Sundays and tickets are $22 for adults and $11 for children 12 and younger. For reservations, visit shermanplayers.org or call 860-354-3622.
Breakfast at the Zoo
Frosty and friends will welcome guests for Breakfast at the Zoo at Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo, 1875 Noble Avenue, Bridgeport, on Saturday, Dec. 5, from 9 to 11 a.m. Cost is $15, which includes zoo admission, photo opps with visiting holiday characters, and breakfast. The breakfast will also be offered Dec. 6, 12, 13, 19 and 20.
Reservations are required and may be made by calling 203-394-6574 (Amanda Bolanos).
Library art show
The early December tradition at the Mark Twain Library in Redding turns the library into a gallery for the Art Show fund-raiser, which opens with a members-only celebration on Dec. 4 and to the public from Dec. 5 to 13, with all art for sale.
A number of special events are planned during the show; information is available at marktwainlibrary.org or by calling 203-938-2545. The library is at 439 Redding Road/Route 53, at Diamond Hill Road.
The Friends of Ambler Farm in Wilton will present the 2015 Holiday Greens Sale of Fraser and Balsam trees, wreaths and roping on Saturdays, Dec. 5 and 12, from 9 to 4 and Sundays, Dec. 6 and 13, from 11 to 4. The sale proceeds help support the farm’s ongoing programs and restoration of the historic Raymond-Ambler Farmhouse.
The farm is at 257 Hurlbutt Street. For more information, visit amblerfarm.org.
The Silvermine Arts Center will host its annual Holiday Sale and Artisan Trunk Show on Saturday, Dec. 5, from 10 to 5 at the Silvermine School of Art; the Holiday Sale will continues on Sunday from 1 to 5.
The Saturday trunk show will include jewelry with semi-precious gemstones by Susan Roberts; vibrantly colored glass plates by Marty Kremer; clothing by Zee Mizrahi; sculptural faux bone jewelry by Robert Dancik; and wooden bowls by Nigel Howe. Also available will be jewelry and enameled boxes by Hilda Kraus (1915-2014), a lifetime member of the Silvermine Guild.
The School of Art Holiday Sale features work by both teachers and students at Silvermine. The gift shop will be open daily through Dec. 23, from noon to 5. Silvermine Arts Center is at 1037 Silvermine Road, New Canaan. For more information, visit silvermineart.org or call 203-966-9700.
A Winter Ballet
The Performing Arts Center of Connecticut will present its annual A Winter Ballet, featuring Tchaikovsky’s classic The Nutcracker Kingdom of Sweets, on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 1 and 7 p.m. at Trumbull High School auditorium, 72 Strobel Road. All proceeds benefit the high school’s theater arts program.
Reserved seats are $20, available at showclix.com. For more information, call 203-372-ARTS or visit pacofct.com.
The Nutcracker Ballet
The Greenwich Ballet Academy will present The Nutcracker at the White Plains Performing Arts Center, 10 City Place, White Plains, N.Y., on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 2 and 7 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 6, at 2 p.m. Yuri Vodolaga is artistic director.
Pre-professional students from the academy will be featured in all the roles. Tickets are $60, $40, and $25; for reservations, visit greenwichballetacademy.org.
A Christmas Carol
Master storyteller Jonathan Kruk will give dramatic performances of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol on December weekends at the historic Christ Episcopal Church in Tarrytown, N.Y., where Washington Irving served as a vestryman. Complete with musical accompaniment, Kruk will bring to life the characters of the holiday story.
Performances will take place Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 5-20, at 3:30, 4:45, and 6 (no 4:45 on Dec. 20, final show at 7:15). The church is at 43 South Broadway (Route 9) in Tarrytown. Capacity is very small so reservations are necessary; visit hudsonvalley.org or call 914-366-6900.
The Greenwich Choral Society’s Christmas concert, Christmas Blessings, will feature Part Two of J.S. Bach’s Weihnachts-Oratorio (Cantata for the Second Day of Christmas) as well as Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus, accompanied by a baroque-sized orchestra and a quartet of soloists. The concert concludes with a selection of traditional carols, with audience participation.
Performances will take place Saturday, Dec. 5, at 4 and Sunday, Dec. 6, at 2:30 and 5 at Christ Church, Greenwich, 254 East Putnam Avenue. Tickets are available at greenwichchoralsociety.org or by calling 203-622-5136.
Jonathan Yates will lead the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra in its third annual Messiah Sing-Along and Holiday Extravaganza on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 5 p.m. at the Norwalk Concert Hall, 125 East Avenue. The audience will be invited to join the orchestra and soloists in the choruses from Handel’s Messiah and there will be a full selection of Christmas classics.
For tickets or more information, visit norwalksymphony.org or call 203-956-6771.
Charis Chamber Voices will ring in the holiday season with a program of carols and sacred music spanning six centuries in concerts this weekend: Saturday, Dec. 5, at 4 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church of Mount Kisco, 605 Millwood Road (Route 133), Mount Kisco, N.Y., and on Sunday, Dec. 6, at 4 p.m. at the Bedford Presbyterian Church, Village Green, Bedford, N.Y.
Tickets are $25 ($20 for seniors and students); for reservations, visit charisvocals or call 914-931-6575.
The Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra will be joined by singer Jessica Medoff for its annual Holiday Concert on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 8 p.m. at the Ridgefield High School auditorium, 700 North Salem Road/Route 116. Winter and holiday favorites selected by music director and conductor Gerald Steichen are on the program, which will include an appearance by Emmy Award-winning journalist, author and emcee Ira Joe Fisher.
Tickets are available at ridgefieldsymphony.org or by calling 203-438-3889.
Let the River Run
The Suzanne Sheridan Band, with Rob Silvan and the Talmadge Hill Choir, will perform a benefit concert for KEYS, featuring the music of Carly Simon, Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen and others, on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 8 p.m. at the Unitarian Church of Westport, 10 Lyons Plains Road. KEYS provides Bridgeport children with individual and group music instruction (keysmusic.org).
For tickets, $25 in advance, visit voicescafe.org or call 203-227-7205 x14.
Pantochino Productions Inc.’s Nite Spot Nights performance on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 8 at the Milford Arts Council, 40 Railroad Avenue South, will be a show of carols and best-loved holiday songs from the forties, fifties and sixties, plus some new songs by Pantochino composer Justin Rugg.
The center is set up with tables and chairs and patrons are invited to bring food and drink to enjoy during the show. All tickets are $25; for reservations, visit milfordarts.org or call 203-878-6647.
Holiday House Tour
The Westport Historical Society Holiday House Tour will take place Sunday, Dec. 6, from 11 to 4; tickets are $50 in advance, $60 on the day of the tour. They’re available at the historical society, 25 Avery Place, Westport, or by calling 203-222-1424.
The Danbury Railway Museum is once again offering families the opportunity to take a train ride through its historic railyard to visit Santa Claus, starting Sunday, Dec. 6, and continuing Dec. 12-13 and 19-20. Trains will depart every half-hour from noon to 3:30 on Saturday and 12:30 to 3:30 on Sunday and the cost is $10 for everyone age 2 and older. Each child will receive a small gift from Santa. There will be special night-time rides through the lighted railyard on both Saturday evenings at 4:30.
The museum is at 120 White Street, in the restored 1903 Danbury Rail Station. For more information, visit danburyrail.org or call 203-778-8337.
Salute to Schindel
The Weston Historical Society will celebrate the creative genius of Weston Woods Studio founder Mort Schindel and his contributions to children’s literacy. A three-dimensional program opens on Sunday, Dec. 6, from 1 to 4 at the historical society, 104 Weston Road.
The exhibition of artifacts from Weston Woods will be augmented by the screening of the studio’s video shorts and classics, which will also be shown on Dec. 20, Jan. 10, Jan. 24, Feb. 7 and Feb. 14 from 1 to 4 p.m.
For more information, visit westonhistoricalsociety.org.
Pet Photos with Santa
Ridgefield Operation for Animal Rescue (ROAR) invites pets and their families to have a photo taken with Santa on Sunday, Dec. 6, from 2 to 4 at William Pitt Sotheby’s Realty, 470 Main Street, Ridgefield. A $15 donation will be requested for one digital photo, with proceeds going to benefit the dogs and cats of ROAR’s Donofrio Family Animal Shelter. Participants are also asked to bring a new can or bag of dog or cat food to support the local food pantry and the Connecticut Mobile Food Bank.
For more information, visit roar-ridgefield.org.
Dylan Thomas classic
The Stratford Library will host a performance of A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas, featuring Colin Lane with musical accompaniment by Rebecca Zaretzky, on Sunday, Dec. 6, at 2 p.m. The event is sponsored by the Friends of Square One Theatre and is free. For more information, visit stratfordlibrary.org or call 203-385-4162.
The Fairfield County Children’s CHoir will sing a program of holiday music, Ring In the New!, on Sunday, Dec. 6, at 3 p.m. at the Klein Memorial Auditorium, 910 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport. Artistic director Jon Noyes has selected carols and popular songs and has arranged a new version of Esa Einai by Shlomo Carlebach for the choir.
Tickets are $15 and $20; for reservations, visit theklein.org or call 1-800-424-0160.
The Western Connecticut Youth Orchestra will present its first concert of the season on Sunday, Dec. 6, at 4 p.m. at the Ridgefield High School auditorium, 700 North Salem Road/Route 116. The WCYO Symphony Orchestra, String Ensemble and Wind Ensemble will perform works by composers including Holst, Dvorak, Prokofiev, Salter, Vaughan Williams, Sibelius, Copland, Verdi and Glinka.
Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for seniors and children under 18. For more information, visit wctyo.org.
The choral group Camerata d’Amici will present A Choral Celebration of Christmas on Sunday, Dec. 6, at 4 p.m. at the South Salem (N.Y.) Presbyterian Church, 111 Spring Street. Kristin Sponheim will conduct a wide array of selections, including traditional carols with the audience invited to sing along.
Tickets at the door are $25 for adults and $10 for children 12 and younger. For more information or discounted advance tickets, visit cameratadamici.org.