The real thing One of our favorite children's stories,

The Velveteen Rabbit

, gets a new musical take with puppets, masked actors and magic tricks. The

Enchantment Theatre Company

production of Don Sebesky and Gloria Nissenson's musical goes on at 1 and 4 p.m. today at the

Suzanne Roberts Theatre

, 480 S. Broad St., and continues with shows at 1 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, and at 1 and 4 p.m. Saturday and next Sunday. Tickets are $26; $14 for ages 12 and under. Call 215-881-9899.

Gifts of mirth In keeping with the bowl-full-of-jelly spirit (you know, that jolly old elf stuff), here are some laugh packages: In the two-man comedy

Greater Tuna

, the staff at a small-town Texas radio station bring the natives to life. The show goes on 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. today at the

Walnut Street Theatre's

Independence Studio on 3, 825 Walnut St., and continues with shows at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Thursday, 7:30 p.m. Friday, and 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and next Sunday. Tickets are $28. Call 215-574-3550. . . .

Brat Productions

presents Kyle Jarrow's irreverent, Obie Award-winning musical

A Very Merry Unauthorized Children's Scientology Pageant

, which retells the story of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard as a children's holiday extravaganza. The show goes on at 3 p.m. today at

St. Stephen's Theater

, 10th and Ludlow Streets, and continues with shows at 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 3 and 7 p.m. Saturday, and 3 p.m. next Sunday. Tickets are $15 and $20. Call 215-627-2577.


Ice capades Take in the city views while gliding along the ice during the extended holiday skating at

the RiverRink

, Columbus Boulevard and Market Street, open from 12:30 to 9 p.m. Monday and Tuesday. Admission is $6; skate rental is $3. Call 215-925-7465.


Happy holiday The annual event

Being Jewish at Christmas

features music by

Peter and Ellen Allard

, a performance by the

Mark Segal Puppet Theatre

, fun science with

Ken Fink

, and comedian

Michael Rosman

. The event goes from noon to 4 p.m. at the

National Museum of American Jewish History

, 55 N. Fifth St. Tickets are $5; ages under 3 and military families are admitted free. Call 215-923-3811.


Pure pop for now people Wondrous pop perfectionists


mark the release of their new CD

Where to Begin

with a show at 7 p.m. at

World Cafe Live

, 3025 Walnut St. Tickets are $16. Call 215-222-1400.

No dancing Before it was a ballet,

The Nutcracker

was a children's tale by the great storyteller E.T.A. Hoffmann. The

Curio Theatre Company

presents a stage adaptation of the story at 7 p.m. Wednesday at

Calvary Church

, 4749 Baltimore Ave., and continues with shows at 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $22; $19 for seniors and students; $10 for ages 12 and under. Call 215-525-1350.

Figures of fun Korean ceramic artist

Sunkoo Yuh

uses depictions of the animal world and everyday life to create whimsical, mythic figurative narratives in porcelain. A show of his work is at the

Art Alliance

, 251 S. 18th St., through next Sunday. Admission is $5; $3 for students and seniors. Call 215-545-4302.

After the merry ends What better way to celebrate Boxing Day than with

Bckseet Productions'

annual presentation of Jeff Goode's comedy

The Eight: Reindeer Monologues

, an adult look behind the scenes at Santa's workshop as the disgruntled antlered employees unload. The show goes on at 8 p.m. Wednesday at the

Society Hill Playhouse's

Red Room, 507 S. Eighth St., and continues with shows at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. Tickets are $21. Call 215-923-0210.


Distinctive voices The headliners are

Modern Man

("Filling the void between the Three Tenors and the Three Stooges"), but the draw for us is the fabulously talented country-rocker

Christy Jefferson

, with her butterscotch vocals and allusive lyrics. The double bill starts at 8 p.m. at the

Sellersville Theater 1894

, Main Street and Temple Avenue. Tickets are $17.50. Call 215-257-5808. . . .

Box Five

is the one-girl band Mary Bichner, whose intense chamber- pop musings are a pure delight. She plays on a three-band bill at 8:30 p.m. at

the Tin Angel

, 20 S. Second St. Tickets are $10. Call 215-928-0770.

Friday & Saturday

Art rock Cabaret rockers

the Dresden Dolls

bring their punk-Weimar sound to the

Fillmore at the TLA

, 334 South St., at 8 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $25. Call 215-922-1011.

Jazz men It will be a local jazz summit when pianist

Uri Caine

reunites with saxophonist

Bootsie Barnes

and trumpeter

John Swana


Chris' Jazz Cafe

, 1421 Sansom St., at 8 and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets are $15 and $20. Call 215-568-3131.