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Music this week

Live music and more, tonight through Thursday, compiled by Tom Di Nardo, Shaun Brady, Sara Sherr, Jonathan Takiff and Damon C. Williams. Plus, seasonal concerts and other events.


Peter Nero & Philly Pops: Nero's band and guests have built "Holiday POPS" into a 10-performance tradition. This year, the 150-member Pops Festival Chorus, the African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas Gospel Choir and organist Peter Richard Conte perform seasonal favorites and a final audience sing-along. Special guests this time are the von Trapp Children, the great-grandchildren from "The Sound of Music's" singing family. Verizon Hall, Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Broad and Spruce streets, 8 tonight, 2 p.m. tomorrow, and 7 p.m. Sunday, with other shows through Dec. 20, $27-$104, 215-893-1999,

'It's a Wonderful Life — a Live Radio Play': Joe Landry's adaptation of Frank Capra's classic holiday film has its Philly debut. The play-within-a-play stars Barrymore Award-winner Pete Pryor (co-founder of 1812 Productions) as George Bailey. Prince Music Theater, 1412 Chestnut St., through Dec. 21, shows 7 p.m. Wednesday-Friday, 8 p.m. Saturday, 3:30 p.m. Sunday, $35 and $45, 215-569-9700 or

Jump City Jazz Orchestra: The Audubon-based, 17-piece big band brings an evening of swinging holiday charts. Its last CD was a tribute to Maynard Ferguson recorded at Chris'. Expect them to bring the same high-energy approach when laying it down for Santa. Chris' Jazz Cafe, 1421 Sansom St., 8 and 10 p.m. tomorrow, $20, 215-568-3131,

Holiday Doo Wop Celebration: I'm (shoo-be-doo-be-wah) dreaming (bam-a-lama) of a white (yip-yip-yip-yip) Christmas. With Mel Carter, Jay Siegal & the Tokens, the Chiffons, Johnny Tillotson and the Thymes. Keswick Theatre, Easton Road and Keswick Avenue, Glenside, 8 p.m. tomorrow, $45 and $49.50, 215-572-7650,

Choral Society of Montgomery County: Louis Scaglione conducts the chorus and his Philadelphia Youth Orchestra in Vivaldi's Gloria, the Bach Cantata No. 147 ("Hertz und Mund und Tat und Leben") and Britten's celestial "A Ceremony of Carols." Science Center Theater, Montgomery County Community College, Route 202 and Morris Road, Blue Bell, 8 p.m. tomorrow, 215-641-6518,

Philadelphia Singers: "Christmas on Logan Square" celebrates the ensemble's 25th year with "Three Nativity Carols" by Stephen Paulus, Steven Heitzig's "Little Tree" and William Billings' "While Shepherds Watched." The program, with David Hayes conducting and a guest appearance by organist Peter Richard Conte, begins with a candlelight procession and concludes with a carol sing-along. St. Clement's Church, 20th and Cherry streets, 5 p.m. tomorrow and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, $32-$43, 215-751-9494, and Madeleine Wing Adler Theater, West Chester University, 817 S. High St., West Chester, 8 p.m. Sunday, $32.90, 610-436-3500,

Bach Festival of Philadelphia: Matthew Glandorf conducts the Bach Festival Orchestra and Choral Arts Society in two Cantatas for Advent and Christmas: No. 61, "Nun komm der Heiden Heiland" and No. 140, the familiar "Wachet Auf" ("Sleepers Awake"). The second part of the Christmas Cantata and the A Major Concerto for Oboe d'Amore and Orchestra fill out the bill. Soloists are sopranos Laura Heimes and Heather Gardner, mezzo Jenifer Smith, tenor David Price and baritone Brian Ming Chu. Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill, 8855 Germantown Ave., 4 p.m. Sunday, $25, 215-247-BACH,

Mad Dragon Holiday Show: Drexel-run local label celebrates with Matt Duke, the Swimmers, Farewell Flight and A Little Affair. World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St., 8 p.m. Sunday, $13, free with valid Drexel ID, 215-222-1400,

New Jersey Master Chorale: The 110-voice chorus, led by Wayne Richmond, offers a holiday program featuring the Gloria from Puccini's Mass, Bryan Kelly's Improvisation on Christmas Carols plus music by Bach, Britten, Bass and Wilberg. Haddonfield United Methodist Church, 29 Warwick Road, Haddonfield, N.J., 7 p.m. Sunday and 7:30 p.m. Monday, free, 856-429-0403.

'An Irish Christmas in America': Two of Ireland's top traditional artists — singer Karan Casey (an original member of locally connected Irish-American band Solas) and the band Teada headline an evening of music, dance and Irish holiday revelry. Philadelphia Irish Center, 6815 Emlen St., 8 p.m. Tuesday, $25 ($21 online), 215-248-0502, 215-843-8051,

Soweto Gospel Choir: Warm, harmonious, 26-voice South African vocal ensemble puts a new aura on holiday music. Verizon Hall, Kimmel Center, Broad and Spruce Sts., 8 p.m. Wednesday, $29-$61, 215-893-1999,

'Amahl & the Night Visitors': Free performances of Gian Carlo Menotti's one-act operetta with English libretto. First Presbyterian Church of Salem, 88 Market St., Salem, N.J., 7 p.m. Wed. and Dec. 21, 267-918-9752,

'Winter Musicale': Bucks County tradition offers an evening of seasonal music, old and new. Bristol Riverside Theatre, 120 Radcliffe St., Bristol Borough, 8 p.m. Thurs., continues through Dec. 21, $29, $10 students, 215-785-0100,


Supersuckers: Celebrating their 20th anniversary, Seattle's rock-'n'-roll hooligans serve up heaps of trashy, funny, rockabilly and garage-flavored "Devil's Food." North Star Bar, 27th and Poplar streets, 9 tonight, $18, 215-787-0488,

John Legend/Raphael Saadiq: Contemporary soul fans should be in 7th heaven this evening. Legend's the bigger deal at the box office, though our money's on Saadiq to blow you over with new tunes referencing classic Motown, Memphis and Philly soul styles. Tower Theater, 69th and Ludlow streets, 8 tonight, $40.50, $56 and $66, 215-336-2000,

Adrian Legg: Devotees of fleet-fingered acoustic guitar pickers will be agog at this man's unmatched dexterity and rhapsodic tunes. And his glib, between-song patter is equally a delight. Tin Angel, 20 S. 2nd St., 7:30 tonight, $18.50, 215-928-0978,

The Bobs: These amusing a cappella guys add a special tingle to holiday jingles with "Sleigh Bobs Ring!" Appel Farm, 457 Shirley Road, Elmer, N.J., 8 tonight, $21.50, 800-394-1211,

Tom Rush: This warrior of winter gets the urge for performing again. World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St., 7:30 tonight, $35-$45, 215-222-1400,

The Radiators: Attention Fishheads! Yer fave New Orleans blues rockers are returning to a local haunt, to heat your seat and get you on your feet. Palombaro Club, 2632 E. County Line Road, Ardmore, 8 tonight and tomorrow, $40, 610-642-9730,

Hot Tuna: Yo, Jorma and Jack — you missed Thankgsiving again. Still, fans of your S.F.-rooted blues rock should be willing to forgive and forget. Scottish Rite Auditorium, 315 White Horse Pike, Collingswood, N.J., 8 tonight, $36 & $20, 856-216-2170,

Mercury Rev: Yes, this adventurous prog-rock group fronted by a high-pitched lead singer really is from upstate New York (though they sound so British or Rush-y Canadian). And they're still pushing at the creative limits in their musical "laboratory." With Dean & Britta and Like a Fox. Trocadero, 10th and Arch streets, doors at 8 p.m tomorrow, $17.50/$20 (all ages). 215-922-LIVE,

April Verch Band: Exceptional fiddler and step dancer leads her band in old-timey folk, Ottowa style. Calvary Church, 48th Street and Baltimore Ave., 7:30 p.m. tomorrow, $5 children, $10 students and seniors, $15 standard, $20 special supporters. Verch also leads a fiddle workshop at 11 a.m. Sunday. 800-838-3006,

The Walkmen: Influences as eclectic as Joy Division, Bjork, Bruce Springsteen and the Velvet Underground help propel this band's compelling music. Beach House, in the opening slot, is a dreamy, low-fi pop duo of Alex Scally and Victoria Legrand, niece of legendary French composer Michel Legrand. TLA, 334 South St., 9 p.m. tomorrow, $16, 215-922-1011,

Richard Julian: Delaware's own and the co-star (with Norah Jones) of the Little Willies comes out to play on his own. If you dig Paul Simon, you're on Julian's wave length, too. Meaghan Smith opens. Tin Angel, 20 S. 2nd St. 7 p.m. Sunday, $12, 215-928-0978,

The Subdudes: The balmiest, bluesiest, stripped-down Bayou band we adore is back in "all acoustic" form and celebrating their new DVD concert release — so pick up a copy at the show. Lili Anel opens. Sellersville Theater, Main and Temple Sts., 7:30 p.m. Sunday, $33, 215-257-5808,

Radio 104.5 Holiday Bizarre: Oh, the things bands will do to pump up airplay! This too-big-for-the-joint, bargain-priced bill-o-fare bundles the notorious Scott Weiland (of Stone Temple Pilots), the effervescent Ting Tings and awesomely tainted Airborne Toxic Event. TLA, 334 South St., 8 p.m. Sunday, $10.45, 215-336-2000,

Supersuckers: Yeah, the guys are playing two area gigs, this time at that new club south of the city. The Note, 142 E. Market St., West Chester, 8 p.m. Monday, $12. 800-594-TIXX,

Rachael Yamagata: Ruminative singer/songwriter can keep it as quiet as she wants at this seated (shhhhh) Sanctuary show. Low Anthem opens. First Unitarian Church, 2125 Chestnut St., 8 p.m. Tuesday, $16 (all ages), 866-468-7619.

Michael Bolton: Pop belter serves up all those romantic hits. Hope you have someone's hand to hold. Scottish Rite Auditorium, 315 White Horse Pike, Collingswood, N.J., 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, $49.50, $59.50, $69.50, 856-216-2170,

Carbon Leaf: Richmond, Va.'s gift to rootsy pop should have you humming along. The Note, 142 E. Market St., West Chester, 8 p.m. Wednesday, $16/$18, 800-594-TIXX,

Rock the Folk Out Tour: Out magazine showcase three talented gay singer-songwriters — Stewart Lewis, Jake Walden and Tom Goss. Tin Angel, 20 S. 2nd St., 8:30 p.m. Thursday, $10, 215-928-0978,


Welcome to the Jungle: It says right here that Hedonis da Amazon is one of the tightest emcees ever to come out of Philly. Seen on VH1's "Miss Rap Supreme" and "Driven," the hard-rhymin' Hedonis is back here sharing the stage with Montana Black, Ethel Cee, Big Lou, MAGr and Cymarshall Law. Slim DSM hosts this can't-miss showcase, while DJ Touch Tone provides the music. Khyber, 56 S. 2nd. St., 9 tonight, $8, 21+, 215-238-5888,

Do You Remember The Times? Making this month's gathering even more spectacular is that it doubles as veteran DJ Gary-O's birthday party. Fellow legends Lady B and Parry P will also show love. North By Northwest, 7165 Germantown Ave., 9 tonight, $15, 25+, 215-248-1000,

Paul Wall: One of the earliest disciples of late, Houston-based producer DJ Screw (of Chopped 'N' Screwed fame), Wall has more than made a name for himself with three straight platinum-plus releases, including the incredible debut, "The People's Champ." Want more platinum? Wall also owns a customized diamond fronts business, with clientele such as Lil' Jon and T.I. Crocodile Rock Cafe, 520 W. Hamilton St., Allentown, 6 p.m. Tuesday, $15, 610-434-4600,

Philly Brotherly Love Concert: It almost reads like a Roc-A-Fella reunion as Beanie Sigel hosts this lyrical throwdown that also included esteemed local emcees Freeway, Gillie, Joey Jihad, Reed Dollaz, Vodka and E-Ness. The concert's free but requires a ticket, available at Villa stores. TLA, 334 South St., 6 p.m. Thursday.


Cloak/Dagger: Black Flag-influenced band on Jade Tree headlines an early all-ages show with Static Radio, P-ssed Jeans-related Birth Control and Aneurysm Rats (members of None More Black, One Up and Painted Black). Upstairs at the Khyber, 56 S. 2nd St., 6 tonight, $10, all ages,

Birdie Busch: Philly singer/songwriter debuts music from her upcoming third release, along with newcomer Emily Bate. Green Line Cafe, 4426 Locust St., 7 tonight, $7, all ages, 215-222-0799,

P-ssed Jeans: The mighty, Stooge-like rockers take over the Danger Danger Gallery with War on Drugs' Kurt Vile and Snowstorm. Danger Danger Gallery, 5013 Baltimore Ave., 8 tonight, $5, all ages,

Iron: Local reggae/soul/ska band is joined by Pink Skull, DJ Rob Paine of Solomonic Sound System and the Dubsmith. Johnny Brenda's, 1201 N. Frankford Ave., 8 tonight, $10, 215-739-9684,

Puppet Uprising's 9th Annual Year-End Cabaret: Includes Beth Nixon, Little Ditty Productions, Robot Neutron, Eating the Other, Puppelele, the Great Quentini and a cheap-art bazaar. Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St., 8 p.m. tonight and tomorrow, free, all ages, 215-573-3234,

Himalaya: Philadelphia-turned-Brooklyn band (including members of the Three-4-Tens and Asteroid #4) are a mix of early Pink Floyd, the Verve and Spacemen 3. They're joined by the likeminded, Pitchfork-recommended Ports of Call. Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 N. Front Street, 9 tonight, free,

Sex Dwarf Snow Ball: Wear your winter-themed costume to the new-wave party hosted by WXPN's Robert Drake and Marilyn Thomas. Fluid, 614 S. 4th St., 9 tonight, free before 10, or $5 after, 215-629-3686,

The Lara and Joe Show: Husband-and-wife duo most likely to perform on "Yo Gabba Gabba" includes members of power pop combos the Marts and Elastic Medium. Johnny Brenda's, 1201 N. Frankford Ave., noon tomorrow, $5 per person, $15 per family, 215-739-9684,

Rock The Fish: Philly faves the Low Road comes out of hiatus to support Kensington theater Walking Fish. The benefit also includes Chris Buchanan Legal Defense Fund, Medusa Sings the Blues, New Pony, the Other Brother and sketch comedy troupe High Dramma. All proceeds benefit acting classes offered to local children and families. Walking Fish Theatre, 2509 Frankford Ave., 7 p.m. tomorrow, $20-25, 215-427-9255,

Jeremy Enigk: Ex-Sunny Day Real Estate frontman does a rare solo performance. With Thief Steal Me a Peach and This is Benji. Khyber, 56 S. 2nd St., 9 p.m. tomorrow, $15, 215-238-5888,

Jukebox The Ghost: The People Paper's fave piano-pop trio returns with Papertrigger and Exit Clov. Johnny Brenda's, 1201 N. Frankford Ave., 9 p.m. tomorrow, $10, 215-739-9684,

Vitamin D Productions: Ninth Annual World Peace Festival includes an eclectic line-up in the Tara Lynne Band, Norman Taylor, Mia Johnson, Emily Bate, African ensemble Alokli, Six O'Clock Saints, Darwin Deez, the Dangerous Ponies and Philadelphia Slick. Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St., 6:30 p.m. Sunday, free, all ages, 215-573-3234,

Dancing Through the Decades: Costume contest from the '70s and '80s, the easiest decades for crazy outfits. Bell-bottoms or spandex? Khyber, 56 S. 2nd St., 8 p.m. Sunday, $12, 215-238-5888,

'Hedwig and the Angry Inch' In Concert: Features the original cast and band from Akuza Theater, including Dito van Reigersberg (aka Martha Graham Cracker). Trocadero, 10th and Arch streets, 6 p.m. Monday, $25-75, 215 733-0255,

Stephen Bluhm: Local singer/songwriter channels the best of Stephin Merritt, Morrissey and Jonathan Richman. He's part of the Needles Jones-hosted Monday Night Club. National Mechanics, 22 S. 3rd St., 9 p.m. Monday, free, 215-701-4883,

Sounds of Kaleidoscope: DC psych-shoegazer band joins Native Black (members of Gildon Works and Like A Fox), and DJ sets from Megawords' Dan Murphy and Relay side project Arc In Round. Silk City, 5th and Spring Garden streets, 9 p.m. Wednesday, $5, 215-592-8838,

Metal Beard: Johnny Brenda's metal monthly includes Keelhaul, Backwoods Payback and Jail. Johnny Brenda's, 1201 N. Frankford Ave., 9 p.m. Wednesday, $5, 215-739-9684,

Dangerbird: Philly-Brooklyn combo Illuminea resurfaces and regroups with Smile From Tokyo. Green Line Cafe, 4426 Locust St., 7 p.m. Thursday, $5, all ages, 215-222-0799,

Radar Brothers: Decade-old L.A. band should satisfy fans of Red House Painters and Black Heart Procession. With Roomtone and Swivel Chairs. Johnny Brenda's, 1201 N. Frankford Ave., 8 p.m. Thursday, $10, 215-739-9684,

Kira Kira: Singer from Mum enchants with toy instrumentation like thumb piano, music boxes, glockenspiel and guitar. With Dygn, Cloudminder and Northern Valentine. M Room, 15 W. Girard Ave., 9 p.m. Thursday, $8, 215-739-5577,


Bakithi Kumalo: Thrust into the international spotlight when Paul Simon hired him for the monumentally popular "Graceland" album, bassist Bakithi Kumalo has continued to bring the music of his native South Africa to audiences through a blend of African rhythms and fusion jazz. Philadelphia Museum of Art, 26th & Ben Franklin Parkway, 5:45 and 7:15 tonight, free with regular museum admission of $14, 215-763-8100,

Shot x Shot: Wrapping up a year that has included the release of their second CD, "Let Nature Square," a performance of Ornette Coleman's music and, with saxophonist Dan Scofield, co-founding the weekly Sci-Fi Philly series, the avant-jazz quartet curates its own evening presented by Bowerbird, inviting Buchla Music Easel synthesizer maestro Charles Cohen to share the bill. Powel House Museum, 244 S. 3rd St., 8 tonight, $8-$10,

Lars Halle Jazz Orchestra: Philly big band tore it up at October's Clifford Brown symposium, premiering a new piece written for them by New York trombonist John Fedchock. Hopefully that workout has entered their regular repertoire, but even without it, this band can make their audiences break a sweat right along with the musicians. Chris' Jazz Cafe, 1421 Sansom St., 8 and 10 tonight, $15, 215-568-3131,

Rudresh Mahanthappa: Continuing to explore the conjunction of jazz and his Indian heritage, Mahanthappa brings "Samdhi Unplugged" to the Bride. The project, an acoustic version of an electronic piece premiered earlier this year in Pittsburgh, combines elements of several of the saxophonist's ensembles into a new, intriguing package. Painted Bride Art Center, 230 Vine St., 7 & 9 p.m. tomorrow, $25, 215-925-9914,

Richard Bona: Cameroonian-born bassist Bona is a lyrical virtuoso, gliding across the strings of his electric bass with a mesmerizing grace. His resume includes stints with Joe Zawinul and Harry Belafonte, but he's spent the last several years releasing a string of lovely African-fusion albums. World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St., 7:30 p.m. Sunday, $30-$40, 215-222-1400,

Flatlands Collective: International collective of innovative improvisers, a sextet led by Dutch saxophonist Jorrit Dijkstra that includes such Chicago leading lights as cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm, trombonist Jeb Bishop and drummer Frank Rosaly. International House, 3701 Chestnut St., 8 p.m. Sunday, $12, 215-387-5125,

Alash Ensemble: One of the oddest friendships in music history is the one between Tuvan throat singing ensemble Alash and the members of the outer-space big-band Sun Ra Arkestra. The Tuvans return to the Arkestra's home city, joined by the Extra Special Terrestrial Guests, including Arkestra leader Marshall Allen and saxophonist Elliot Levin. Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St., 8 p.m. Wednesday, free,

mi3: Trio of Greek-born Fender Rhodes master Pandelis Karayorgis and Boston-based drummer Curt Newton and bassist Nate McBride takes the angular tunes of Monk and Dolphy as a leaping-off point for their own quirky, zig-zag free-jazz. Philadelphia Art Alliance, 251 S. 18th St., 8 p.m. Thursday, $12,


Philadelphia Orchestra: David Zinman returns as guest conductor, leading Samuel Barber's Symphony No. 1 and Richard Strauss' audience favorite "Also Sprach Zarathustra." The soloist is Norwegian cellist Truls Mork, who will tackle the passionate Elgar Cello Concerto. Verizon Hall, Kimmel Center, Broad and Spruce streets, 2 p.m. today and 8 p.m. tomorrow, $39-$125, 215-893-1999,

Curtis Symphony Orchestra: Jose-Luis Novo, conductor of the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra and the Binghamton Philharmonic Orchestra, will replace the ailing Otto-Werner Mueller for Respighi's "Gli uccelli" ("The Birds") and Beethoven's revered Symphony No. 6, the "Pastoral." Violinist Jose Maria Blumenschein and violist Misha Amory share solo roles in the Double Concerto by American composer Jonathan Leshnoff. Perelman Theater, Kimmel Center, 8 tonight, $23, 215-569-8080,

Alisa Weilerstein: Winner of many prestigious awards, the brilliant cellist will solo in Zoltan Kodaly's Sonata and Osvaldo Golijov's "Omaramor," then receive keyboard support from Inon Barnatan in Cello Sonatas by Beethoven (Op. 102/2) and Chopin (Op. 65). Reform Congregation of Keneseth Israel, 8339 Old York Road, Elkins Park, 6 p.m. tomorrow, $40, 215-887-8700.

Tempesta di Mare: Hornist Todd Williams is the soloist in works by Handel, Kozeluch, Telemann and Graun, while winds and strings perform pieces by Fasch and Vivaldi in this Baroque who's-who. Chestnut Hill Presbyterian Church, 8855 Germantown Ave., 8 p.m. tomorrow; and Old St. Joseph's Church, 321 Willings Alley, 3 p.m. Sunday, both free, 215-755-8776,

Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia: Conductor Ignat Solzhenitsyn spotlights his accomplished principal flute Edward Schultz in the sprightly 1926 Flute Concerto by Carl Nielsen. The program also features the commissioned premiere of Russian minimalist Vladimir Martynov's "De Profundis" and is bookended by Mendelssohn Sinfonias Nos. 3 and 8. Perelman Theater, Kimmel Center, 2:30 p.m. Sunday and 7:30 p.m. Monday, $24-$81, 215-893-1999,

Jennifer Koh: In an alumni recital, the ferociously intense violinist returns to play the Bach solo Partita No. 2. She'll then collaborate with Lithuanian pianist Ieva Jokubaviciutein the mighty Violin Sonatas by Brahms (No. 2) and Bartok (No. 1). Field Concert Hall, Curtis Institute of Music, 1726 Locust St., 3 p.m. Sunday, $25, 215-893-7902,

Philharmonic Wind Quintet of New York: These five principal players from the New York Philharmonic offer a concert of rarities, including Gyorgy Ligeti's Six Bagatelles and "La Nouvelle Orleans" by Lalo Schifrin, famed for his film scores. The program also includes the local premiere of American composer David Maslanka's Wind Quintet. Independence Seaport Museum, Columbus Boulevard and Walnut Street, 3 p.m. Sunday, $23, 215-569-8080,

Lidia Kaminska: Few musicians impress in serious works on accordion, but Kaminska is a major-league performer. She'll play Sofia Gubaidulina's "De Profundis," Bach's A Minor Prelude and Fugue and Sonatas by Scarlatti and Alexander Pushkarenko to show off her solo skills, wrapping with three sizzling bandoneon pieces by Astor Piazzolla. Two other performers affiliated with Astral Artists, violinist Jennifer Curtis and pianist Michael Mizrahi, assist in little-known works by Chiel Meijering and Tatiana Sergeeva. Trinity Center, 2212 Walnut St., 3 p.m. Sunday, $16, 215-735-6999,

Haverford-Bryn Mawr Chorale and Chamber Orchestra: Thomas Lloyd conducts the 160-voice chorus in Handel's opulent "Alexander's Feast." Roberts Hall, Marshall Auditorium, Haverford College, 370 Lancaster Ave., Haverford, 3 p.m. Sunday, free, 610-896-1011,

1807 and Friends: The versatile Wister String Quartet performs superb string quartets by Beethoven (Op. 18/4) and Dvorak, subtitled the "American" Quartet. Up front, Philadelphia Orchestra flutist David Cramer guests in Devienne's G Minor Trio for flute and strings. Academy of Vocal Arts, 1920 Spruce St., 7:30 p.m. Monday, $17, 215-438-4027.

Orchestra 2001: Music director James Freeman moves to the keyboard, joining fellow pianist Marcantonio Barone in the religious meanderings of "Visions de L'Amen" by the late Olivier Messiaen, celebrating the composer's 100th birthday. Philadelphia Orchestra violinist Barbara Govatos and Barone will perform "Morning Star" by Swarthmore College professor Gerald Levinson, one of Messiaen's last students. Lang Concert Hall, Swarthmore College, 500 College Ave., Swarthmore, 8 p.m. Wednesday, free, 215-922-2190,

Philadelphia Orchestra: Montreal native Yannick Nezet-Seguin, who replaced Valery Gergiev as music director of the Rotterdam Philharmonic, makes his orchestra debut in the evergreen Tchaikovsky Sixth Symphony, the famous "Pathetique." Pianist Andre Watts makes an always-heralded return, soloing in Rachmaninoff's moving Piano Concerto No. 2. Verizon Hall, Kimmel Center, 8 p.m. Thursday and Dec. 12-13, $39-$125, 215-893-1999,

Marlboro Musicians: The first of three programs by artists affiliated with the famed summer festival begins with two expressive String Quartets: No. 1 by Leos Janacek, subtitled the "Kreutzer Sonata," and the late Mozart E-Flat Quartet, K.614. The finale is the ebullient E-Flat Octet for strings by Mendelssohn. Independence Seaport Museum, Columbus Boulevard and Walnut Street, 8 p.m. Thursday, $23, 215-569-8080, *