Tim Palmieri of The Z3

This Week in New Haven (December 12 - 18)

Santa Claus will soon be coming to town, they say, with a list of who’s been naughty or nice since last December 25. Which means a couple of light transgressions—drinking two evenings in a row, as you can do at The Grove, or indulging a rather twisted take on Christmas, as you can do at Lyric Hall—won’t make a difference this late in the game.

Monday, December 12
Staging nightly through Thursday, December 15, the next performance of Bulgaria! Revolt!, a “tragicomic new musical” created by this staging’s director, Elizabeth Dinkova, and the play’s librettist, Miranda Rose Hall—both MFA candidates at Yale—happens in Yale’s Iseman Theatre (1156 Chapel St, New Haven) tonight at 8 p.m. “Inspired by Geo Milev’s epic poem, September,” the play follows “a condemned poet… through time and space,” “from a Bulgarian village on the eve of revolution to the fantastical capitalist paradise of America.” $25, or $15 for students.

sponsored by

Helping Kids - United Way of Greater New Haven

Tuesday, December 13
If you or, in book biz parlance, a “young adult” in your family have a soft spot for teenaged adventurers saddled with unfair rules and unyielding authorities, novelist Neal Shusterman’s free 6:30 p.m. appearance at R.J. Julia should be of interest. Shusterman, whose hard-edged entrants into the youth dystopia genre have landed him on the New York Times Best Sellers list, is selling and signing copies of his latest, Scythe, which is set in a world where “disease has been eliminated,” “the only way to die is to be randomly killed (‘gleaned’) by professional reapers (‘scythes’)” and two teenagers find themselves facing both the giving and receiving ends of that dynamic. 768 Boston Post Road, Madison. (203) 245-3959.

Wednesday, December 14
Co-working space The Grove (760 Chapel St, New Haven) hosts its weekly Wine Down Wednesday, an easygoing, public-inclusive networking event, from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Consider it a warm-up for the office’s “Wonder” holiday party tomorrow evening from 6 to 9, when “the halls will be decked” and “there’ll be an epic holiday beverage and drink bar.” Entry to Wonder is free, though organizers request that attendees “bring… a snack to share.”

Thursday, December 15
On the naughty side, at 7 p.m., a new 4K restoration of the slasher flick Christmas Evil (1980), whose poster features a Santa wielding a bloody axe, is showing at Lyric Hall (827 Whalley Ave, New Haven; 203-389-8885) for just a buck.

On the nice, at 7:30, New Haven Symphony Orchestra and Christ Church Choir fill Woolsey Hall (500 College St, New Haven) with the familiar, comforting holiday sounds of Handel’s Messiah. Regular tickets cost between $15 and $74, with discounts for college students and youth.

Friday, December 16
Putting a contemporary spin on a retro idea, The Z3—fronted by Tim Palmieri, pictured above—is right in its wheelhouse tonight at Pacific Standard Tavern (212 Crown St, New Haven), where it promises “funky takes on Frank.” That would be Frank Zappa, the deceased legend the trio was formed to honor, by whom The Z3 does very right thanks to confident, danceable grooves and rollicking guitar and keyboard solos. The show starts at 9, with a $10 cover.

Saturday, December 17
The last in a three-Saturday series of Winter Festivals on the Green happens today from noon to 4. The open-format itinerary includes “visits with Santa, horse and carriage rides, petting zoo and carousel.” Free.

Tonight at 8 and tomorrow at 4, the Connecticut Gay Men’s Chorus presents its annual holiday show in Cooperative Arts & Humanities High School’s main auditorium, a.k.a. the Co-Op Theater (177 College St, New Haven). Titled Christmas Stories, this year’s theme is “songs from all those Christmas specials and movies that we all loved growing up,” stretching to include more contemporary tunes as well as “some songs about bizarre holiday traditions that we just had to share with our audiences.” $25, or $30 for “premium” seats.

Sunday, December 18
The Church of the Redeemer UCC (185 Cold Spring St, New Haven) hosts a special “healing Christmas service” at 5 p.m. Deliberately avoiding being “a worship service with lots of joy,” as usually occurs this time of year, the proceedings are tailored to people “ with the holiday season due to grief, unemployment, broken relationships, infertility, miscarriage, addictions depression,” and for whom boundless exuberance and optimism aren’t helpful answers.

Written and photographed by Dan Mims. Readers are encouraged to verify times, locations and prices before attending events.

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