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EVENTS

Arts: the week ahead around Boston

Kevinberne.Com

PETER PAN The tale of the boy who wouldn’t grow up gets a thrilling new production in a 1,300-seat tent, mixing low-tech puppetry with jaw-dropping scenic projections and acrobatic flying effects to tell J.M. Barrie’s classic story in the round. Pictured: Emily Yetter as Tinker Bell. Through Dec. 30. Presented by threesixty° entertainment at City Hall Plaza. 888-772-6849, www.peterpantheshow.com/boston

THEATER

UNCLE VANYA John Kuntz stars in this Craig Lucas adaptation of Chekhov’s drama about unrequited love and disappointed dreams on a once-grand country estate. Seating will be limited to 30 spectators per performance, and the audience will move to different locations around the theater as each of the play’s four acts is staged in a different spot. Extended through Jan. 22. Presented by Apollinaire Theatre Company at Chelsea Theatre Works, Chelsea. 617-887-2336, www.apollinairetheatre.com

THREE PIANOS Lurking at the heart of this clever, beguiling, and often whimsical journey through Franz Schubert’s “Winterreise’’ is the notion that music - all music - has a singular power to speak not just to us but for us. Through Jan. 8. Presented by American Repertory Theater at Loeb Drama Center, Cambridge. 617-547-8300, www.americanrepertorytheater.org

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THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR Unconstrained by any sense of obligation to a masterpiece - which this Shakespeare comedy decidedly is not - director Steven Barkhimer and his well-chosen cast (including Richard Snee as Falstaff) simply cut loose in a creative, freewheeling, and entertaining style. Through Jan. 1. Presented by Actors’ Shakespeare Project at Davis Square Theatre, Somerville. 866-811-4111, www.actorsshakespeareproject.org

DON AUCOIN

ARABIAN NIGHTS With humor, pathos, and lushly colored scenic design, this irresistible production unleashes the imagination and transports us to another world while reminding us of the power of storytelling, not only to take us outside ourselves but to recognize our common humanity. Through Dec. 31. Presented by the Nora Theatre Company and Underground Railway Theater at Central Square Theater, Cambridge. 866-811-4111, www.centralsquaretheater.org

TERRY BYRNE

DANCE

THE NUTCRACKER For New Year’s Eve, Boston Ballet promises an extra special performance of its holiday production. This one-time-only celebration rings in the new year (and retires its current production design) with an all-star cast and surprise guests. Last year’s event was a sell-out. Dec. 31. $40-$169. The Boston Opera House. 617-695-6955, www.bostonballet.org

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SEAN FIELDER AND THE BOSTON TAP COMPANY Fresh off a guest slot opening for the Rockettes, Fielder and members of his talented, enthusiastic crew of young hoofers tap their way into the Hynes Convention Center for a prime time First Night showcase. Dec. 31, 9:30 p.m. $18 First Night button (children under 4 free). Hynes Convention Center Ballroom. 617-542-1399, www.firstnight.org

ORIGINATION/O’SHEA CHAPLIN DANCE First Night opens the evening’s dance offerings with one of its signature pairings, which marketing calls “a cross-cultural hip-step-hop.’’ OrigiNation, which embeds values of self-esteem, respect, health and education into its work, focuses on African-influenced dance, such as hip-hop, jazz, and step. The young dancers of the O’Shea Chaplin Academy of Irish Dance mine traditional and contemporary styles from the Emerald Isle. In between shows is an 8:15 “Tap Battle’’ that also includes the Boston Tap Company. Dec. 31, 7:30 and 8:45 p.m. $18 First Night button (children under 4 free). Hynes Convention Center Ballroom. 617-542-1399, www.firstnight.org

THE SLUTCRACKER Ring in the New Year with a little bump and grind in this bawdy production. Scene by scene, the show transforms the traditional “Nutcracker’’ tale into a burlesque parody, nixing child-like wonder in favor of ribald sexual fantasy. Not for the kids! Dec. 31. $20-$25. Somerville Theater. 617-625-5700, www.theslutcracker.com

KAREN CAMPBELL

GALLERIES

VAST VISTAS: LANDSCAPE IN NEW MEDIA How does new technology reflect the natural world? Through video, animation, and digital manipulation, artists Julia Hechtman, Georgie Friedman, Jane Marsching, and Luke Strosnider explore time, space, climate change, and the evolution of image-making. Through Feb. 10. Atlantic Wharf, 290 Congress St. 617-524-8495, www.bostoncyberarts.org

AMERICAN MASTER PRINTS 1900-1960 This exhibit features etchings by John Sloan depicting scenes of daily life in New York neighborhoods, George Bellows’s images of the campaigns of evangelist Billy Sunday and several works by prominent women printmakers. Through Jan. 14. Wiggin Gallery, Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. 617-536-5400, www.bpl.org

THE NEW BIG IS SMALL A collaborative exhibit in which artists take contrasts of scales to the extreme. Small works explore expansive space. Large works measure inches in feet. Artists include Jennifer Amadeo-Hall, Judith Page, Tom Wojciechowski, and Charles Yuen. Through Jan. 6. FPAC Gallery, 300 Summer St. www.fortpointarts.org

RED The Cambridge Art Association’s winter show always focuses on a color. This year, it’s a warm, festive red. Or is it hot and passionate? Boston art dealer Howard Yezerski was the juror. Through Jan. 11. Kathryn Schultz Gallery, 25 Lowell St., Cambridge and University Place Gallery, 124 Mount Auburn St., Cambridge. 617-876-0246, www.cambridgeart.org

CATE McQUAID

MUSEUMS

HANS HAACKE 1967 Reviving a show the German-born, MIT-affiliated artist put on at MIT in 1967, this startling exhibit is like a tidy and strangely beautiful science experiment that grapples with wind, water, ice, and earth. Through Dec. 31. List Visual Arts Center. 617-253-4680, listart.mit.edu

APHRODITE AND THE GODS OF LOVE Drawing on the MFA’s superb Greek and Roman collections, as well as nine first-rate loans from Italy, this show explores the role of Aphrodite and her amorous offspring in around 150 exquisite objects, some of them decidedly saucy. Through Feb. 20. Museum of Fine Arts. 617-267-9300, www.mfa.org

DANCE/DRAW Work by 40 artists in a brilliant, witty, and vibrant show that explores the multilayered connection between drawing and dance in contemporary art. Through Jan. 16. Institute of Contemporary Art. 617-478-3100, www.icaboston.com

1961-62: ART AT THE ORIGINS Marking the Rose Art Museum’s 50th anniversary, this exhibition highlights works from the collection that were made in the museum’s first few years of existence, and includes masterpieces by de Kooning, Warhol, Lichtenstein, and Marisol. Rose Art Museum, Waltham. 781-736-3434, www.brandeis.edu/rose

SEBASTIAN SMEE
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