By Suzanne Van Atten
What better way to pass the cold, dreary days of winter than inside a climate-controlled venue where the likes of Jay-Z, Cinderella or Mahler are sure to heat things up. Here are the AJC’s recommendations for 20 fun things to do this season.
1. Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 18 with the ASO. Robert Levin, a Harvard professor and scholar of classical-era music, is the guest artist. ASO principal guest conductor Donald Runnicles also leads Aaron Jay Kernis’ “Musica Celestis” and Beethoven’s “Pastoral” Symphony No. 6. Jan. 7, 9-10. Symphony Hall. www.atlantasymphony.org.
2. Atlanta Jewish Film Festival. Fifty films will be screened, including “Camera Obscura,” a 2008 Argentinean film about a woman rejected for her lack of conventional beauty until a visiting surrealist photographer sees her in a different light. Jan. 13-24. Multiple venues. www.ajff.org.
3. “Good Boys and True” at Actor’s Express. A sex scandal involving a videotape at a boy’s prep school in 1988 fuels this drama by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. Melissa Foulger directs. Jan. 14-Feb. 13. www.actors-express.com.
4. Mariah Carey. Touring to support her latest CD, “Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel,” Carey brings her Angels Advocate tour to the Fox Theatre Jan. 19. www.ticketmaster.com
5. Diana: A Celebration. The touring exhibition contains 150 items that span the life of Princess Diana. The showstopper is sure to be her wedding gown, complete with 25-foot train. Jan. 23-June 13. Boisfeuillet Jones Atlanta Civic Center. www.dianaexhibition.com. www.ticketmaster.com.
6. “Young Frankenstein.” Broadway Across America brings the musical stage version of Mel Brooks’ comic take on the misunderstood monster to the Fox Theatre. Jan. 26-31. www.broadwayacrossamerica.com. www.ticketmaster.com.
7. T. Coraghessan Boyle. The prolific novelist and winner of the Pen/Faulkner Award for Fiction lectures and signs copies of his latest, “The Women,” Feb. 2 at the Margaret Mitchell House. www.atlantahistorycenter.com.
8. “Tales of Edgar Allen Poe.” The Center for Puppetry Arts brings the macabre tales of this masterful storyteller to the stage. Feb. 2-21. www.puppets.org.
9. “Brownie Points” at Theatrical Outfit. Jasmine Guy directs this comedy by Atlanta playwright Janece Shaffer about a girl’s club campout that goes awry. Feb. 3-28. The Balzer Theater at Herren’s. www.theatricaloutfit.org.
10. The Black Eyed Peas. The stripper who had an alleged tryst with Josh Duhamel better watch out, because Fergie is coming to town. Feb. 4. Philips Arena. www.ticketmaster.com.
11. “Cinderella” by the Atlanta Ballet. A wicked stepmother, a fairy godmother and a prince with a foot fetish collude to change the course of a young girl’s life. Feb. 4-14. Cobb Energy Centre. www.atlantaballet.com. www.ticketmaster.com.
12. Dayton Contemporary Dance Co. This 40-year-old dance company has produced and archived the largest collection of dance works by African-American artists. Feb. 20. Rialto Center for the Arts. www.rialtocenter.org.
13. Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. The Zing Zang Zoom Red Tour comes to Philips Arena Feb. 12-21. www.ringling.com. www.ticketmaster.com.
14. Jay-Z and Young Jeezy. His “Empire State of Mind” topped the Billboard charts and he just got five Grammy nominations. Now is the time to see Jay-Z. Feb. 27. Philips Arena. www.ticketmaster.com.
15. “Aida” by the Atlanta Opera. Things get messy in this love triangle between an enslaved Ethiopian princess, the rising leader of the Egyptian army and his vengeful betrothed. Feb. 27-March 7. Cobb Energy Centre. www.atlantaopera.org. www.ticketmaster.com.
16. Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 by the ASO. Robert Spano conducts the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in a performance of this monumental work that also features the women of the ASO Chorus, Gwinnett Young Singers and soloist Ruxandra Donose. March 4 and 6. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center. www.atlantasymphony.org.
17. Eric Clapton. Classic rock’s favorite guitar deity brings Roger Daltrey along on this leg of his tour, which in other cities have featured Steve Winwood and Jeff Beck. March 9. The Arena at Gwinnett Center. www.ticketmaster.com.
18. “Spring Awakening.” German dramatist Frank Wedekind’s scandalous turn-of-the-century drama about adolescent sexuality meets a rock ‘n’ roll sensibility in this Tony Award-winning adaptation featuring music by Duncan Sheik and book and lyrics by Steven Sater. Presented by Broadway Across America. Fox Theatre. March 9-14. www.broadwayacrossamerica.com. www.ticketmaster.com.
19. Craig Ferguson. The Scottish comic, author, filmmaker, punk rock drummer and host of the “The Late, Late Show” on CBS performs stand-up comedy at the Cobb Energy Centre March 14. www.ticketmaster.com.
20. “The Last Cargo Cult” at the Alliance Theatre. Called “one of the elite performers in the American theater” by the New York Times, Mike Daisey examines parallels between a money worshipping cult in the South Pacific and our current financial crisis. Hertz Stage. March 19-April 11. www.alliancetheatre.org.