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Article posted: 11/20/2012 6:00 AM

Best bets: Salt Creek's 'Nutcracker' dances onto the stage


Nutcracker of the week
'Tis the season for battling mice, graceful snowflakes and cavorting confectionary. Yes, the Tchaikovsky ballet "The Nutcracker" is dominating local dance stages again. The Salt Creek Ballet presents its version at multiple locations: Hinsdale Central Auditorium, 5500 S. Grant St., Hinsdale; The Center for Performing Arts, 1 University Parkway, off I-57 at Sauk Trail, University Park; and at the North Shore Center for Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie. Tickets vary by venue. Visit saltcreekballet.org for details. 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 24-25 in Hinsdale; 1 and 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8, in University Park; and 1 and 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16, in Skokie

Master songwriter
Influential Canadian singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen comes back to town with a concert at the Akoo Theatre at Rosemont, 5400 N. River Road, Rosemont. $49.50-$95. (800) 745-3000 or rosemonttheatre.com. 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 23

Fatel for fun
If you love comedian Mitch Fatel for his appearances on Comedy Central and satellite radio, then catch him live as he returns this weekend to the Improv Comedy Showcase, 5 Woodfield Road, Woodfield Mall, Schaumburg. $19-$22 plus a two menu-item purchase. (847) 240-2001 or improv.com. 8 and 10:45 p.m. Friday, Nov. 23; 7 and 9:15 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 24; and 7 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 25

Tough guys & toys
Wrestlers Steve Boz and "Strangler" Diego Corleone are just a couple of tough guys taking part in a fundraising bout for the Pro Wrestling Toys for Tots Toy Drive at the Pyramid Club, 236 W. Lake St., Addison. Admission is one new and unwrapped toy (no stuffed animals or toy weapons). (630) 458-0777 or pyramidclubaddison.com. 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 23

Guitar going
Folk guitarist Muriel Anderson continues her ongoing tradition of a special post-Thanksgiving concert at Downers Grove North High School Auditorium, 4436 N. Main St., Downers Grove. This Saturday's concert also features guest musician Howard Levy. $23-$25; $15-$17 students/seniors. murielanderson.com. 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 24

Old man, young wife
A rich old man marries a younger woman to keep his fortune away from his nephew, but things don't go according to plan in Donizetti's comic opera "Don Pasquale," which returns Sunday to the repertory of the Lyric Opera of Chicago. It's sung in Italian with projected English translations at 20 N. Wacker Drive, Chicago. $34-$239. (312) 332-2244 or lyricopera.org. 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 25, and Thursday, Dec. 6; 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 28, Saturday, Dec. 8 and 15, and Monday, Dec. 10

Bon Jovi jam
Bon Jovi fans won't want to miss "Bon Jovi Inside Out," which features choice song cuts from concerts in New York and London and a live question-and-answer session screened at select participating suburban movie theaters ranging from Gurnee to Naperville. Tickets vary, but largely $12.50-$15. See fathomevents.com for details. 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 27

'50 Shades' slap
Literary spoofs of the sex-filled novel "Fifty Shades of Gray" are rife, but now here comes a stage version called "SPANK! The Fifty Shades Parody." The comedy commences a three-week run at the Royal George Theatre Main Stage, 1641 N. Halsted St., Chicago. $42.50-$52.50. (312) 988-9000 or spankshow.com. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday, 5 and 8 p.m. Saturday, 3 p.m. Sunday from Nov. 28 through Dec. 16

Cabaret cheer
Catch Chicago-area jazz and cabaret singers Laura Freeman, Beckie Menzie and Marianne Murphy-Orland performing Christmas carols and more in the concert "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" at theMetropolis Performing Arts Centre, 111 W. Campbell St., Arlington Heights. $25. (847) 577-2121 or metropolisarts.com. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 28

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