Dayton holiday guide: Two dozen events, concerts to know about

Hip-hop legend Kurtis Blow (pictured), a DJ, a dozen dancers and a violinist are among the performers in “The Hip-Hop Nutcracker,” coming to Victoria Theatre in Dayton on Friday, Dec. 3.

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

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Hip-hop pioneer Kurtis Blow (pictured), a dozen dancers, a DJ and a violinist are among the performers in director-choreographer Jennifer Weber’s “The Hip-Hop Nutcracker,” presented at Victoria Theatre in Dayton on Friday, Dec. 3. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Holiday entertainment abounds in the Dayton area. Here are events and concerts to consider when making your plans.

EVENTS

Cirque Dreams Holidaze

Since 1993, Cirque Dreams has been delivering high-energy themed shows such as “Jungle Fantasy” and “Unwrapped” featuring acrobats, dancers, gymnasts, jugglers and other performers. The Projects Unlimited Star Attractions series presents the seasonal show Cirque Dreams Holidaze at Victoria Theatre, 138 N. Main St., Dayton, Monday through Sunday, Dec. 20 and 26. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, noon Friday and 6 p.m. Sunday, with 2 p.m. matinees Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday. There is no performance on Saturday, which is Christmas Day. Cost: $35 to $85. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

“The Nutcracker”

Dayton Ballet was unable to present “The Nutcracker” to live audiences in 2020 but the holiday tradition is back this year. The company’s 2021-2022 season presented by Dayton Performing Arts Alliance continues with this holiday show at the Shuster Center, Second and Main streets, Dayton, on Friday, Dec. 10. The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra will also perform. “The Nutcracker” is presented weekends through Sunday, Dec. 19. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Friday, 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Cost: $19 to $86. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

Harlem Globetrotters

Nearly a century after the Harlem Globetrotters started suiting up teams filled with unique hardwood talent, the organization still finds ways to innovate the game of basketball. It’s latest update is its Spread Game tour, which is making stops in 200 cities in 2021 and 2022. The Globetrotters bring the Spread Game tour to the area for its annual New Year’s Eve stop at the Nutter Center, 3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy., Fairborn, at 2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 31. Doors open at 1 p.m. Cost: $27 to $137. Call 937-775-4789 or visit www.nuttercenter.com.

“The Hip-Hop Nutcracker”

Dayton Live’s Children’s Family Series upcoming holiday program features director-choreographer Jennifer Weber’s contemporary update of a longtime seasonal favorite. The program features a DJ, a dozen dancers, a violinist and hip-hop legend MC Kurtis Blow, who opens the show with a short set. “The Hip-Hop Nutcracker” is presented at Victoria Theatre, 138 N. Main St., Dayton, at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 3. Cost: $39 to $89. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

“Who’s Holiday”

Most of us are familiar Dr. Suess’ 1957 children’s book, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” but like all classic tales, there is more action, comedy and drama to draw from this extremely valuable piece of intellectual property. One such reimagination is “Who’s Holiday,” an adult retelling of Cindy Lou Who’s Christmas interaction with the irascible Grinch. Human Race Theatre Company’s production of the play opens at The Loft Theatre, 126 N. Main St., Dayton, on Thursday, Dec. 2. “Who’s Holiday” runs through Sunday, Dec. 19. Show times are 8 p.m. December 2 through 4, 9 through 11 and 16 through 18, 2 and 7 p.m. Dec. 5, 7 p.m. Dec. 7 and 8, 14 and 15, and 2 p.m. Dec. 12 and 19. Cost: $30 to $40. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

Fuse Fest

Local stand-up comics Luke Capasso and Karen Jaffe have been plotting to launch a major event for years and that time has come. The Fuse Comedy & Art Festival will present special shows at Wiley’s Comedy Club, Oregon Express and Yellow Cab Tavern Friday through Sunday, Dec. 3 through 5. In addition to comedy sets, many performers will also be showcasing original visual art at Feathers, Yellow Cab and other downtown businesses. Cost: $15 per show, $45 festival pass. Visit www.facebook.com/FUSE-FEST-104398845289334.

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After years of plotting, local stand-up comics Karen Jaffe and Luke Capasso have organized the first Fuse Comedy & Art Festival, which will present special shows at Wiley’s Comedy Club, Oregon Express and Yellow Cab Tavern Friday through Sunday, Dec. 3 through 5. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

After years of plotting, local stand-up comics Karen Jaffe and Luke Capasso have organized the first Fuse Comedy & Art Festival, which will present special shows at Wiley’s Comedy Club, Oregon Express and Yellow Cab Tavern Friday through Sunday, Dec. 3 through 5. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

caption arrowCaption
After years of plotting, local stand-up comics Karen Jaffe and Luke Capasso have organized the first Fuse Comedy & Art Festival, which will present special shows at Wiley’s Comedy Club, Oregon Express and Yellow Cab Tavern Friday through Sunday, Dec. 3 through 5. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

“Season’s Greetings”

What do you get when you combine a pair of local theater vets, Gina Handy and Philip Drennen, with musician Deron Bell? “Season’s Greetings,” a live musical cabaret at PNC Arts Annex, 46 W. Second St., Dayton. The show, which features seasonal favorites like “Jingle Bells” and “I’ll Be Home For Christmas,” opens on Thursday, Dec. 9. “Season’s Greetings” is also presented on Dec. 10, 12, 15, 16 and 19. All shows begin at 7:30 p.m. Cost: $25-$35. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

South Dayton Dance Theatre

South Dayton Dance Theatre presents its 27th annual holiday show at Dayton Masonic Center, 525 W. Riverview Ave., Dayton, on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 4 and 5. Show times are 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Cost: $15 to $35 adults, $15 children younger than 12. $300 for VIP tables of six. Livestream tickets are available. After Saturday’s performance, SDDT is hosting its first Snowflake Ball at the Masonic Center from 9-10:30 p.m. Cost: $20 per person. Parent sponsor packages are $80 for admission for two and two-drink tickets or $100 for admission for three and three drink tickets. Call 937-435-5052 or visit www.sddt.org.

“Rike’s Holiday Windows Spectacular”

While the Friday night presentation of “Rike’s Holiday Windows Spectacular” sold out quickly, tickets are still available for two shows at PNC Arts Annex, 46 W. Second St., Dayton on Saturday, Dec. 4. This original production, inspired by the local holiday attraction, was created by the cast and crew. Show times are 1 and 4 p.m. Cost: $5. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

Christkindlmarkt

Each December for decades, Dayton Liederkranz-Turner, 1400 E. Fifth S., Dayton, has hosted Christkindlmarkt, an annual holiday market with vendors selling handcrafted items, beers steins, jewelry, antiques, food and other items. The centuries-old German tradition returns on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 11 and 12. Market hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and noon to 3 p.m. Sunday. The biergarten will remain open until 8 p.m. on Saturday. Call 937-223-9013 or visit www.daytongermanclub.org.

Viennese New Year’s

“Return to Vienna” is the theme of Dayton Performing Arts Alliance New Year’s Eve concert at the Shuster Center, Second and Main streets, Dayton, at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 31. Partner groups Dayton Ballet, Dayton Opera and Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra will close out the year in grand fashion during this signature annual events.

The program includes pieces by Josef Wagner, Ludwig van Beethoven, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johan Strauss II. Featured performers include Teresa Perotta (soprano), Alec Carlson (tenor) and Aurelian Oprea (violin) and dancers Emily Luria, Marie Tender, Lukas Pringle and Isaac Jones.

Cost: $50. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

CONCERTS

Trans-Siberian Orchestra

Trans-Siberian Orchestra is one of the top-grossing touring acts on the planet but like other performing groups, COVID-19 forced a break from the road in 2020. After doing a livestream concert last holiday season, the group is back out with the 25th anniversary of “Christmas Eve and Others Stories.” Trans-Siberian Orchestra returns to the area for a pair of performances at the Nutter Center, 3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy., Fairborn, on Saturday, Dec. 4. Show times are 3 and 8 p.m. Cost: $49.50 to $89.50. Call 937-775-4789 or visit www.nuttercenter.com.

Straight No Chaser

It has been a dozen years since Straight No Chaser helped popularize modern a cappella with its breakthrough album, “The 12 Days of Christmas.” A deluxe edition of the group’s album, “Social Christmasing,” was recently released. The chart-toppers return to the area on its Back in the High Life Tour for a concert at the Schuster Center, Second and Main streets, Dayton, at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 22. Cost: $34.50 to $62.50. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

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A cappella group Straight No Chaser, which recently released a deluxe edition of the album, “Social Christmasing,” brings its Back in the High Life Tour to the Schuster Center in Dayton on Wednesday, Dec. 22. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

A cappella group Straight No Chaser, which recently released a deluxe edition of the album, “Social Christmasing,” brings its Back in the High Life Tour to the Schuster Center in Dayton on Wednesday, Dec. 22. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

caption arrowCaption
A cappella group Straight No Chaser, which recently released a deluxe edition of the album, “Social Christmasing,” brings its Back in the High Life Tour to the Schuster Center in Dayton on Wednesday, Dec. 22. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Gaither Vocal Band

At 85, Bill Gaither is still taking his music ministry to the masses. After the COVID-19 slowdowns, the award-winning singer is back on the road with his wife, Gloria, and the Gaither Vocal Band. The gospel group brings its All Heaven and Nature Sing Christmas Tour to the area for a performance at Hobart Arena, 255 Adams St., Troy, at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 10. Doors open at 6 p.m. Cost: $28 to $70. Call 937-339-2911 or visit hobartarena.com.

Dayton Philharmonic

Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra’s 2021-2022 season presented by Dayton Performing Arts Alliance continues with a pair of different holiday concerts at the Schuster Center, Second and Main streets, Dayton. First up is “Holiday Pops,” two SuperPops series concerts featuring vocalist Shayna Steele, at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Dec. 3 and 4. Cost: $26 to $85. DPO presents “Handel’s Messiah” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 15. The concert also features Dayton Philharmonic Chamber Choir and soloists Christina Hazen (mezzo-soprano), Amy Owens (soprano), Anthony Leon (tenor) and Allen Michael Jones (bass). Cost: $39 adults, $37 seniors, military and educators, $21 students. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

Dayton Gay Men’s Chorus

This year Dayton Gay Men’s Chorus is doubling up the fun with two presentations of its annual holiday concert. “Naughty & Nice” is presented at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 125 N. Wilkinson St., Dayton, at 2 and 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 4. Cost: $20. Dayton Gay Men’s Chorus, which was founded in 2003, continues its abbreviated 2021-2022 season with “Flashback” at Dayton Masonic Center on June 4. Visit www.daytongaymenschorus.org.

Lakeside

The Original Lakeside was last in the area in September 2019 when the group performed alongside the Ohio Players and other funk acts in a fundraising concert at Rose Music Center in Huber Heights that raised more than $100,000 for survivors of the Memorial Day tornadoes. Now, the band is returning to the area for a concert inside the Schiewetz Auditorium at Dayton Masonic Center, 525 W. Riverview Ave., Dayton, at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 19. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Cost: $50 to $85. Visit daytonmasonic.live.

Zach Williams

It has been nearly a decade since Zach Williams denounced his rowdy life as a roots rocker, returned to the church and made the very successful transition to contemporary Christian music. The move paid off for the multiple-award winner. William, currently on his I Don’t Want Christmas to End Tour, makes a stop at Hobart Arena, 255 Adams St., Troy, at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 2. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Special guest Anne Wilson opens the show. Cost: $20.50 to $61.50. Call 937-339-2911 or visit hobartarena.com.

Bach’s Lunch

The holiday season is on the horizon and that means the return of Bach’s Lunch. The Carillon Brass is back for its annual concerts at the Loft Theatre, 126 N. Main St., Dayton, on Friday, Dec. 10. The brass quintet will play a mix of holiday songs and traditional ensemble pieces. Show times are 10 a.m. and noon. Cost: Free, but seating is general admission and limited so advance tickets are required. Call 937-228-3630 or visit www.daytonlive.org.

Kettering Children’s Choir

Kettering Children’s Choir and its new concert choir director Christina Smith present a pair of holiday concerts at Kettering Seventh Day Adventist Church, 3939 Stonebridge Road, Kettering, on Sunday, Dec. 12. The program features the Chorus, Chorale, Concert Choir, a cappella and alumni groups of the Kettering Children’s Choir. Show times are 2 and 4 p.m. Cost: Free, but canned donations are requested for local food pantries. Call 937-701-4893 or visit ketteringchildrenschoir.org.

Bach Society of Dayton

Bach Society of Dayton is getting into the spirit of the season with “Sweet Sounds of the Holidays.” The concert of seasonal choral music at Kettering Adventist Church, 3939 Stonebridge Road, Kettering, at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 5, also features the Kettering Advent Ringers. Cost: $20 adults, $10 students, free children 12 and younger. Call 937-294-2224 or visit www.bachsocietyofdayton.org.

HoliDayton

After a long stretch at Blind Bob’s, the 19th annual HoliDayton music festival started by Mark McMillon of the Story Changes and Hawthorne Heights is having a change of venue. This year’s installment is at The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton, at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 10. The lineup includes Nightbeast, the Story Changes, the Raging Nathans, Abertooth Lincoln and Paige Beller. Cost: $14. Call 937-410-0450 or visit www.thebrightsidedayton.com.

Dayton Music Club

Dayton Music Club presents its Christmas Recital and Luncheon at Dayton Woman’s Club, 225 N. Ludlow St., Dayton, on Tuesday, Dec. 7. This holiday program will feature familiar seasonal favorites such as “Silent Night,” “God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen” and “A Winter Carol.” The program begins at 11 a.m. followed by lunch at 12:15 p.m. Cost: The recital is free, lunch is $20 and reservations are required by Dec. 2. Call 937-297-0463 or visit daytonmusicclub.org.

Contact this contributing writer at 937-287-6139 or e-mail at donthrasher100@gmail.com.

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