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November 30 wednesday

Everything's better on ice, except maybe jump-roping. To prove that maxim, Disney's Princess Classic stops at Bobcats Arena for eight shows. Aladdin, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and more will reenact scenes from their classic stories while performing triple salchows and double axels. Will Ariel fall in love with an adrift hunk all over again? Will Dopey out-lutz Sneezy? The Princess Classic plays Wed., 7:30pm; Thurs., 10:30am and 7:30pm; Fri., 7:30pm; Sat., 3:30 and 7:30pm; Sun., 11:30am and 7:30pm. Call 800-495-2295 for tickets ($12-$50). (Neumark)

Yee-haw! Actor's Theatre of Charlotte is riding the Wild West again with Johnny Guitar: The Musical. This no-holds-barred spoof by Nicholas van Hoogstraten, with music by Marti Silvestri and lyrics by Joel Higgins, takes aim at the 1954 film starring Joan Crawford and Sterling Hayden. Much of the ammo is supplied by renegades who hammed their way to glory in ATC's award-winning Flaming Guns of the Purple Sage back in 2003. Pam Hunt-Spradley and Polly Adkins are two-thirds of the love triangle in this lawless, sexy Western set in 1885 Arizona. Directed by Craig Spradley. Through December 17 at Actor's Theatre, 650 E. Stonewall Street. Performances at 7:30pm Wednesdays and Thursdays, 8pm Fridays and Saturdays. Pay-what-you-can on December 6, and a 2:30pm December 11. Tickets are $20-$25 with discounts for cowboys, saloon gals and Joan Crawford lookalikes in high-camp attire. Call 704-342-2251. (Tannenbaum)

december 01 thursday

Cyberspace is the final romantic frontier in Glenn T. Griffin's Intim@te E-pistles, a script that caught our fancy when Off-Tryon Theatre Company first presented it as a staged reading a couple of years ago. There's a pinch of Love Letters here, a dash of Cyrano there and an AOL-lotta gender confusion. Alistair, a gay British novelist played by Griffin, writes e-mails on behalf of his wife to the dreamboat she met one night before he flew home to California. Can an amiable husband and wife sort out which one gets dibs on the dashing millionaire? Julie Janorschke directs the comedy at SouthEnd Performing Arts Center, 201 Rampart Street, through December 17. Thursdays-Saturdays at 8pm. Tix are $15 for adults, $12 for students/seniors. Special pay-what-you-can on December 7. Call 704-332-5300. (Tannenbaum)

december02friday

God and Santa only know what kids want for Christmas nowadays. But in A Christmas Story, humorist Jean Shepherd takes us back to the 40s, when wholesome red-blooded American boys were expected to grow up to be upstanding NRA predators. So his hero, 9-year-old Ralphie Parker, craves a genuine Red Ryder BB gun. Children's Theatre plunks this throwback buckaroo into the spanking new McColl Family Theatre in the wake of the Narnian Witch. Little Ralphie's quest is dogged by school bully Scut Farkas and a multitude of skeptics -- his teacher and Santa included -- who repeatedly inform him, "You'll shoot your eye out, kid!" Nicia Carla directs the next new thing at ImaginOn, through December 18. The $18 front orchestra tickets are sold out for nearly half of the shows, but $14 general admission seats are still available. Call 704-973-2828. (Tannenbaum)

David Allan Coe has been on a rollercoaster ride marked by more ups and downs than the Die Hard franchise, a chronicle pitted with poor decisions (tax evasion), bad will (five divorces), tall tales (something about murder and death row) and an unchecked ego that's often run afoul of others (his notorious sexist and racist X-rated songs). A lifelong renegade (ex-con/biker) and outlaw country pioneer (even if he does say so himself), Coe remains one of the most distinctive performers around. Tremont Music Hall at 8pm. Tickets are $20. For details call 704-343-9494. (Parker)

december03Saturday

Young Jeezy brings his distinctive gangsta flow to the QC, to the Yule delight of junior hip-hop heads. Let's hope it's all the way live instead of Memorex-like at the recent Vibe Awards. Still, his newest CD, Let's Get It: Thug Motivation 101, situates Jeezy firmly amongst the elite of Def Jam's new wave. Tonight at Cricket Arena with T.I. Showtime is at 8pm and tickets are $25. For details call 704-522-6500. (Crazy Horse)

december04sunday

Durham's Little Brother is suddenly a band in demand, thanks in part to the success of Kanye West and Common. Backpack-friendly yet still possessing that rarest of underground hip-hop traits -- big, creative beats -- the trio of Phonte, Big Pooh and skillet-hot DJ 9th Wonder has been a regional favorite for years. Why not be a Big Brother or Big Sister and go help them out as their star ascends? A Queen City Independent production, the show also features local hip-hop acts The Others and Herron. Tickets are $12 in advance (at etix.com), $14 at the door. (Davis)

We would never dis Handel's "Messiah," but there are other Yuletide choral works in the classical repertoire worth hearing -- some of them less than 250 years old! The Providence Chamber Music Series will biggie-size itself to prove it with its free Christmas Concert at 6:30pm, presenting Ralph Vaughan Williams' "Hodie." The hourlong cantata mixes scripture, liturgy and musical settings of poetry by Milton, Herbert and others. Charlotte Symphony musicians -- including, we suspect, Music Series director Lori Tiberio -- are joined by the Chancel Choir of Providence United Methodist Church, directed by David Stoke. At Providence United, corner of Providence Road and Sharon-Amity. (Tannenbaum)

december 06 tuesday

Detroit neo-soul man Dwele has become a modern Quiet Storm perennial via his association with backpack rappers Slum Village. His sound is awash in Marvin Gaye-style stacked harmonies, needle-on-record effects, languid guitars and mid-tempo grooves fit to satisfy at least two generations of R&B fans. Dwele's latest, Some Kinda, ratifies this organic formula. If you're a regular observer of the progressive soul movement, be sure to come see him put it down at Club Tempo, 4809 Wilkinson Blvd., on Tuesday, Dec. 6. Doors open at 8pm, performance at 9pm. For tickets ($15) or more information, call 704-605-8668 or go to www.thesoulmovement.com (Crazy Horse)

Yet another chamber music series offers us a biggie-sized Christmas gift as the monthly First Tuesday Concert crams three concerti into St. Peter's Episcopal Church for performances at 12:10pm and 5:30pm. Charlotte Symphony concertmaster Calin Lupanu and wife Monica Boboc renew their musical vows, soloing in Bach's "Concerto for Two Violins." Jacqueline Bartlett provides the softer filigree, soloing in Handel's "Harp Concerto," and Corelli's "Concerto Grosso #6" rounds out the program. St. Pete's is at 7th and Tryon, and limited free 90-minute parking is available in the nearby Transamerica Building for both concerts. WDAV (89.9 FM) offers a live broadcast of the noontime concert. Somehow, that's more reason to get there early for seats. (Tannenbaum)

december 07 wednesday

Welcome the Charlotte Bobcats home from their weeklong West Coast trip. Nothing cures jetlag and homesickness like the sweet shouts of the Bobcat faithful. A slam dunk is far more impressive in person. If the Bobcats can't get close enough to the rim, the team's highbrow mascot Rufus Lynx, who named himself after taking a Latin course in school, will supply the thrills. New Jersey brings its division leading squad into the Bobcat Arena for a 7:30pm tip-off. For tickets ($10-$85) call 704-BOBCATS. (Neumark)

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