Nutty Holiday:

No season would be complete without a performance of "The Nutcracker." The American Ballet Theatre is doing 13 performances of Tschaikovsky's work from Dec. 14 to Dec. 23 at the recently opened Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland. The ABT will be the first dance company to appear at the 3,600-seat venue, which will be home to the Academy Awards. Information: (213) 365-3500 or www.hollywoodanhighland.com.

Free Concert:

Pianist Robert Thies, winner of Russia's Prokofiev Competition, will be the featured soloist with the American Youth Symphony in a free concert conducted by Alexander Treger on Dec. 16 at UCLA's Royce Hall. Thies will perform Brahms' Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor. The program also includes Mozart's Symphony No. 31 in D major and Schoenberg's Verklarte Nacht. Information: (310) 234-8355 or www.aysymphony.org.

Contemporary Art:

The works of Los Angeles artist Liz Larner will be on display at The Museum of Contemporary Art downtown from Dec. 2 to March 10. Larner employs a broad palette of materials, from rubber and mold to steel chains, fabric and vinyl, and ranges in scale from small objects to room-sized installations. Information: (213) 626-6222 or www.moca-la.org.

Byzantine Christmas:

Inside the spectacularly beautiful St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral, the annual Christmas Musicfest will be held Dec. 9. Performing will be the Los Angeles Byzantine Chorale, the Russian Orthodox Choir of Los Angeles and the Choir of St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church. The program includes "Gloria" by Vivaldi and traditional Christmas carols. Information: (323) 737-2424 or www.stsophia.org.

Contemporary Art:

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