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WEEKEND BEST BETS
1 Brad Zimmerman’s “My Son the Waiter: A Jewish Tragedy” is the story of one man’s struggle to fulfill his dream of becoming a comedic actor in New York. It’s staged Dec. 1 to 11 at the Jewish Community Center’s CenterStage Theatre. Zimmerman worked on the script for nine years before its nearly two-year Off-Broadway run. jccrochester.org

2 Join Santa Claus and Rudolph at the Sibley Building and the Liberty Pole at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 3. Mayor Lovely Warren switches on the lights of the Liberty Pole outside the Sibley Building, followed by a parade led by Prime Time Brass to Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park Ice Rink. cityofrochester.gov

3 “Jersey Boys,” the 2006 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, returns to the area this week. Presented by Rochester Broadway Theatre League, it runs through Dec. 3. The musical is about the Four Seasons: Frankie Valli, Bob Gaudio, Tommy DeVito and Nick Massi.
rbtl.org, ticketmaster.com

4 The Lake Ontario Wine Trail plans their Christmas Around the World event Dec. 3 and 4. Participating venues will be pairing traditional holiday dishes from around the world with local award-winning wines, spirits and ciders. Each participating location will represent a different country and provide samples.
lakeontariowinetrail.com

5 Celebrate the holiday season at Downstairs Cabaret Theater with “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” which features holiday classics. Jenn Cristy and Eric Brown lead a world-class group of musicians and performers with harmonious melodies of caroling. Shows through Dec. 4.
downstairscabaret.com

Iroquois art
Of the many festivals for which Rochester is famed, only a few can claim to celebrate local life as it was before Europeans settled here. One is the Native American Winter Arts Festival at Ganondagan State Historic Site in Victor on Dec. 3. Artists will be selling handcrafted items, such as baskets, jewelry and paintings. Professional storyteller Joseph Bruchac will spin tales with his son, Jesse. Visitors can watch traditional Iroquois social dancing and try food made with Iroquois white corn, a heritage crop. The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. ganondagan.org

A play on life at Strong
A look at the toys Americans play with reveals much about this country’s history.

With its newest permanent exhibition, “America at Play,” the Strong museum shows how war, technology and other defining events have been reflected in 300 years of games and pastimes. The exhibition opens Dec. 10 with a weekend of special activities.

Curators have selected hundreds of toys from the museum’s collection. There are toys from the 1800s on the American Revolution and western exploration. Movies and sports got a close look in the 1900s.  War’s effect on play is revealed in a toy soldier from the 19th century, a 1960s G.I. Joe and a Master Chief action figure (2000s).

The Strong’s collections are vast and always expanding. A set of display cases will contain recent acquisitions, starting with Disney-themed toys. Throughout the exhibit will be rare artifacts such as the largest Erector Set in the world.

“America at Play” is the last exhibit on the history of play to be installed on the second floor, joining “eGameRevolution,” “Build, Drive, Go,” “Play Pals” and “Game Time!” museumofplay.org

A good laugh for 2016
Capitol Steps, the musical satire group that skewers Beltway insiders on both sides of the aisle, returns to Nazareth College Arts Center New Year’s Eve.

The 2016 presidential campaign will take center stage as the troupe takes a humorous look back on the year’s political wranglings. This year’s material practically wrote itself, with members singing their hearts out as Bernie Sanders, Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

Capitol Steps has recorded an album in each of its 35 years. Its latest is “What to Expect When You’re Electing.” The group was formed in 1981 by Senate staffers who saw an opportunity to use humor to keep perspective amid the scandals and deal-making on Capitol Hill.

Capitol Steps will perform shows at 2 and 6:30 p.m. in the Callahan Theater. Advance ticket purchase is recommended; the shows usually sell out.
naz.edu/arts-center

ARTS and  CULTURE
New artwork will be for sale during the holiday gift show at Nan Miller Gallery, opening Dec. 3 and 4.

Artists with work in the show include Hamilton Aguiar, Susan Anderson, Linda Bigness, Ruth Bloch, Stephen Campo, Joel Hunnicutt, Randi Solin, Judy Soprano, Brian O’Neill, Albert and Frances Paley, Bridget van Otterloo, Dick Westfall and Red Wolf.

The show will have paintings of local winter scenes, abstracts and impressionistic works. There will be wooden jewelry boxes, glass vases, ceramic sculptures and other gift ideas.

Artists Soprano, O’Neill, Campo and Bigness will be at the opening Dec. 3. The opening runs from noon to 4 p.m. both days. nanmillergallery.com

With the arrival of December comes Madrigalia’s tradition of holiday concerts. The choral ensemble will perform works celebrating Hanukkah, Christmas and the winter solstice in three concerts next week.

Madrigalia’s music encourages reflection and a sense of grounding amid the busyness of holiday preparation. The musicians will be joined by the Bach Children’s Chorus and an instrumental ensemble.

The first concert, Dec. 7 from 12:10 to 12:50 p.m., is being recorded for WXXI’s Live From Hochstein program. The second concert is at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9 at the Clover Center, and the third is Dec. 10 at 7:30 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church in Pittsford.

Tickets are available at the door and online. Non-perishable food donations for Blessed Sacrament Church’s food pantry are being collected at the Dec. 9 performance.
madrigalia.org

12/2/2016 (c) 2016 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email [email protected]

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