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Dec. 9-10: Steve Harper photos at RayKo, Max Stier, New Spell, Drag Queens on Ice, Santa Paws, Michelle Schmitt, GERALDCASELDANCE, One Found Sound

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Photographs taken by the late Steve Harper, an Academy of Art instructor and pioneer of night photography, are on view at RayKo. (Courtesy RayKo Photo Center)

THURSDAY, DEC. 8

Ascendancy: The show of Cibachrome prints by the late Steve Harper, a teacher and pioneer of night photography, as well as works by some of his students, opens with a reception. [6 to 8 p.m., RayKo Photo Center, 428 Third St., S.F.]

Max Stier: The founder of the nonprofit Partnership for Public Service speaks on “From Obama to Trump-Ensuring A Smooth Transition.” [6:30 p.m., Commonwealth Club, 555 Post St., S.F.]

Artists in San Francisco for Amatrice: An art exhibition (with donated works by some 30 artists) and auction to benefit those affected by the August 2016 earthquake in Amatrice, Italy, opens with a reception. [6 to 9 p.m., Italian Cultural Institute, 601 Van Ness Ave., Suite F, S.F.]

Michelle Schmitt
: The Bay Area singer-songwriter appears in her eighth annual holiday concert, a benefit for ExtraFood.org, a local nonprofit dedicated to ending hunger. [8 p.m., Throckmorton Theatre, 142 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley]

New Spell
: The Bay Area dark indie pop act fronted by Leanne Kelly boasts “wandering vocals and keyboard-centric songwriting”; Perfect Loss and Ol’ Silver Tongue also are on the bill. [8:30 p.m., Hemlock Tavern, 1131 Polk St., S.F.]

Drag Queens on Ice
: Donna Sachet hosts an evening of performances featuring Mutha Chuka, Paju Munro, Kylie-Pop, Mahlae Balenciaga. Queen Dilly Dally, Sister Roma of the Order of Perpetual Indulgence as well as welcome special new guest, Khmera Rouge of The Imperial Council of San Francisco. [8 p.m., Union Square Ice Rink, 333 Post St., S.F.]

Scott Bukatman: The cultural theorist and professor of film and media studies speaks on “Comics and the Adventure of Reading” in conjunction with the exhibition “Comics in America.” [6 p.m., Cantor Auditorium, Cantor Arts Center, 328 Lomita Drive, Stanford University]

La La Land: The San Francisco Film Society honors accomplishments by writer-director Damien Chazelle at a screening of his new film, with in-person commentary by Chazelle and stars Ryan Gosling, John Legend, and Emma Stone. [8:30 p.m., Castro Theatre, 429 Castro St., S.F.]

Medicare-Everything You Always Wanted to Know
: Dr. Ashby Wolfe, chief medical officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Kay Strawder from the Office of the Assistant Secretary of answer questions about the government health care program. [Noon to 1:30 p.m., Latino/Hispanic Community Room, S.F. Library, 100 Larkin St., S.F.]

Santa Paws: The SF SPCA annual event offers patrons the opportunity to pose their dog friends in a photo with Santa and meet Instagram star Tuna the Rescue Dog. [5 to 8 p.m., Macy’s Holiday Lane, Level 7, 170 O’Farrell St., S.F.]

GERALDCASELDANCE​: The troupe’s 2016 home season concert includes a preview of “Cover Your Mouth When You Smile,” a collaboration with Seoul and Hong Kong based choreographer Na-ye Kim that explores racial melancholia, a preview of “Thirdperson,” a new work for five dancers and a re-staging of the acclaimed ​Fluster. [8 p.m., ODC Theater, 3153 17th St., S.F.]


FRIDAY, DEC. 9

Rotunda Dance Series: Bolivia Corazón de América appears in the free outdoor lunchtime show. [Noon, City Hall Plaza, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, S.F.]

One Found Sound: The chamber orchestra that performs without a conductor continues its fourth season with a program including Copland’s rarely-performed “Quiet City” for English horn, trumpet and orchestra, Enescu’s Decet for Wind, Op. 14, and Kodaly’s “Dances of Galanta.” [8 p.m., Heron Arts, 7 Heron St., S.F.]

SoundBox: The San Francisco Symphony’s late-night live music series opens its third season with Michael Tilson Thomas conducting concerts celebrating visionary American composer, artist, writer and activist Lou Harrison. [9 p.m., 300 Franklin St., S.F.]

The 50 Year Mission Tour
: William Shatner headlines Creation Entertainment’s “Star Trek” convention. [10 a.m., Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport, 1333 Bayshore Highway, Burlingame]

Babes in Joyland
: Opening a three-performance run, the San Francisco Gay Men’s chorus is joined by soprano Marnie Breckenridge for its annual concert of holiday favorites and new tunes, too. [8 p.m., Nourse, 275 Hayes St., S.F.]

Denny Zeitlin: The great jazz pianist plays a solo concert titled “Remembering Miles Davis. [8 and 10 p.m., Piedmont Piano Company, 1728 San Pablo Ave., Oakland]

One Starry Night: Star 101.3’s annual holiday pop concert features Lindsey Stirling, Andy Grammer, Gavin DeGraw and Walking on Cars. [7 p.m., Masonic, 1111 California St., S.F.}

Harry Potter Magical Holiday Ball
: The inaugural event, a book fair and fund raiser for Opening the World (a nonprofit promoting volunteer work to empower young people) includes dancing, music and Harry Potter-themed activities. [7 p.m., Barnes & Noble, 313 Corte Madera Town Center, Corte Madera]

Lacuna Arts Chorale: The singers perform “A Time for Harmony,” featuring Hugo Distler’s “Die Weihnachtsgeschichte,” {“The Christmas Story”) conducted by Sven Edward Olbash. [8 p.m., Old First Church, 1751 Sacramento St., S.F.]

Festival of Latin American Contemporary Choreographers: The three-day event, a varied showcase of work by 16 dance makers of the Latino and indigenous diaspora, opens with “Remembering Pulse,” a program to honor those who perished in the tragic shooting in June at the gay club in Orlando, Fla. [8 p.m., Dance Mission Theater,
3316 24th St., S.F.]

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