Notre Dame de Namur University’s production of “A Christmas Carol” is a 30-year holiday tradition. (Courtesy Joyce Goldschmidt)

Dec. 11-12: Notre Dame de Namur’s ‘Christmas Carol,’ Chris Robinson Brotherhood, Marlon Wayans, Brian Copeland, Silicon Valley Ballet ‘Nutcracker,’ Adler Fellows Gala Concert

FRIDAY, DEC. 11

A Christmas Carol-The Gift: Notre Dame de Namur University opens its 30th annual production of Dickens’ classic story with a special gala presentation; the eight remaining performances are free (with a donation of a toy or nonperishable food). [7 p.m., NDMU Theatre, 1500 Ralston Ave., Belmont]

Chris Robinson Brotherhood: The psychedelic country-rock outfit fronted by the Black Crowes’ co-founder opens a two-night stand. [9 p.m., Fillmore, 1805 Geary Blvd., S.F. ]

Marlon Wayans: The comedian (of “Scary Movie” fame and much more) kicks off a three-night standup engagement. [8 p.m., Cobb’s Comedy Club, 915 Columbus Ave., S.F.]

Green Velvet: The electronica artist, a Chicago native, is known for his unique house tracks with a rocker twist. [10 p.m., Temple, 540 Howard St., S.F.]

The Jewelry Box: In his charming one-man holiday show, storyteller Brian Copeland tells what happens when, as a youngster in the 1970s, he headed to the “mean streets” of Oakland to buy his mom a Christmas present. [8 p.m., Marsh, 1062 Valencia St., S.F.]

Improvised Downton Abbey: BATS improvisors come up with holiday-themed episodes of the popular serial, packed with secrets, rivalries and mistletoe. [8 p.m., Bayfront Theater, Building B, Fort Mason, Marina Boulevard and Buchanan Street, S.F.]

3 Minute Reads: The fast-paced, irreverent evening showcases new work by several dozen students of the San Francisco Writer’s Grotto classes, who have only seconds to present their fiction and nonfiction. [6 p.m., Book Passage, 1 Ferry Building, S.F.]

Let It Snow: Un-scripted Theater improvisors create a brand-new, wholly original ensemble holiday musical from audience suggestions. [8 p.m., Un-Scripted Theater Company, 533 Sutter St., S.F.]

SATURDAY, DEC. 12

Silicon Valley Ballet: Choreographer Karen Gabay’s “Nutcracker,” a fresh take on the holiday classic inspired by the E.T.A. Hoffmann story, opens a 12-performance run. [1:30 and 7 p.m., Center for the Performing Arts, 255 Almaden Blvd., San Jose]

Old Time Maritime Christmas: Visitors will experience Christmas in the year 1901, and can meet captains and crews aboard historic ships during lamplit guided tours that leave every 20 minutes; reservations (call 415-447-5000) are required. [6 to 9 p.m., Hyde Street Pier, 2905 Hyde St., S.F.]

Grace Cathedral Choir of Men & Boys: “A Cathedral Christmas” is a musical retelling of the Christmas story. [3 p.m., Grace Cathedral, 1100 California St., S.F.]

San Francisco Boys Chorus: “A Winter Songfest” features music from around the world and holiday favorites. [5 p.m., Calvary Presbyterian Church, 2515 Fillmore St., S.F.]

San Francisco Renaissance Voices: The fourth annual “Festival of Lessons & Carols” is based on a tradition that began in 1918 at King’s College in England. [7:30 p.m., Seventh Avenue Presbyterian Church, 1329 Seventh Ave., S.F.]

San Francisco Choral Artists: The British Isles-themed program includes readings from Dylan Thomas’ “A Child’s Christmas in Wales.” [8 p.m. Dec. 12, St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 1111 O’Farrell St., S.F.]

Mark Foehringer’s Nutcracker Sweets: The colorful family-oriented 50-minute rendition of the classic has a contemporary twist and live chamber music accompaniment. [11 a.m. and 1 p.m., Cowell Theater, Fort Mason, Marina Boulevard and Buchanan Street, S.F.]

City Ballet School: The “Nutcracker” production features students performing choreography by Galina Alexandrova, a former dancer with the Bolshoi Ballet. [2 and 7 p.m., Palace of Fine Arts, 3301 Lyon St., S.F.]

San Francisco Youth Ballet: Dancers from the troupe and guests appear in the group’s 15th full-length “Nutcracker.” [1 and 5 p.m., Mercy High School, 3250 19th Ave., S.F.]

Dance-Along Nutcracker: The theme of this year’s festive participatory event is “The Nutcracker of Oz.” [3 and 7 p.m., Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F.]

' Chris Robinson Brotherhood' Future is Now-Adler Fellows Gala ConcertBrian CopelandMarlon WayansNotre Dame de Namur's 'Christmas CarolSilicon Valley Ballet 'Nutcracker

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