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The Weekly Memphian: Nutcracker, LITE Pitch Night, Atmosphere, Dale Watson and more

By Updated: December 05, 2018 10:56 AM CT

Thursday

Let's Innovate Through Education Pitch Night: During LITE Memphis’ ninth – and largest – semi-annual Pitch Night, 35 high school students will pitch their entrepreneurial ideas. Those in attendance will help select which ideas will receive thousands of dollars.
The students, in grades 9-12, hail from Bartlett, Central, City University, Cordova, Freedom Preparatory Academy, Germantown, Houston, Millington Central, Power Center Academy, Soulsville Charter School, White Station, Center Hill, Harding Academy, Kingsbury, Memphis School of Excellence and Overton high schools, as well as students that are homeschooled. --Elle Perry

5:30-7:30 p.m. McCallum Ballroom at Rhodes College, 2000 North Parkway, Memphis, TN. Dress code is business casual and light refreshments will be served. Tickets are $5-10.

Stax Music Academy Holiday Concert at the Halloran Centre: Stax Records has a rich history of Christmas music, whether it’s Booker T. & the MGs putting a Soulsville groove on “Jingle Bells,” Carla Thomas singing “Gee Whiz, It’s Christmas,” or Otis Redding giving “White Christmas” or “Merry Christmas, Baby” the Big O treatment. Perhaps the kids from the Stax Music Academy will draw on some of that as they put a modern Memphis spin on holiday sounds in a concert dubbed “It’s Christmas Time Again.” Showtime is 7:30 p.m., but a lobby performance with Santa will commence at 6:30 p.m. -- Chris Herrington

$10. 225 S. Main St.

Friday

Ballet Memphis' Nutcracker: As a child, the Nutcracker was my first experience with ballet and has a special place in my heart. Ballet Memphis is putting on performances of this classic Friday through Sunday. Company dancers Felecia Baker and Lilit Hogtanian portray Clara during the weekend. Also, there are opportunities for photos with the cast after the shows. If you’re interested get your tickets soon, because they are limited. --Perry

Four performances, Dec. 7-9. $10 - $78, Orpheum Theatre.

Atmosphere at the New Daisy Theatre: The first time I saw rapper Sean “Slug” Daley, the MC half of the longstanding indie hip-hop duo Atmosphere, was by accident. I was a senior at a small liberal arts school in St. Paul and was at a University of Minnesota college bar scouting a different hip-hop act to book for our annual Springfest concert. At the end of the show, the group invited a bunch of scene cohorts on stage for a freestyle session, and Slug owned the room, with a dynamic presence and conversational style that instantly set him apart. As Atmosphere later emerged as a national act, Slug was revealed to be one of the genre’s great Everyman storytellers, peppering his tales with wry jokes and visionary flashes. It is not at all surprising to see him and beatmaking partner Ant still touring the country 20 years later, even after the indie hip-hop seen Atmosphere helped foster has risen, dissipated, and dispersed. Dem Atlas, The Lioness, and DJ Keezy open. -- Herrington

8 p.m. 330 Beale Street. General admission tickets $24.50 and $34.50. Newdaisy.com

Dale Watson Christmas Show at Railgarten: An Alabama native with a Texas sound, Watson first started complaining about a “Nashville Rash” in the mid-Nineties. With people like Chris Stapleton and Sturgill Simpson finding mainstream success, country music has become more accepting of traditional sounds in recent years, but there’s still plenty of room for an alternative. Watson calls his “Ameripolitan,” a catch-all for various strains of traditional country and roots music. He now also calls Memphis home, a proper perch to still hurl honky-tonk spitballs Nashville’s way. For this now-hometown Christmas show, Watson will be joined by guitar ace John Paul Keith, whose own songwriting is similarly rooted by even more expansive. This show is a benefit for Toys for Tots. -- Herrington

8 p.m., 2166 Central Avenue. $10.

Saturday

Tower of Power at Horseshoe Casino: This Oakland, California horn-based soul/funk band celebrates its 50th Anniversary Tour. Lead singer Marcus Scott is from Memphis, and has been part of the band since 2016. To get a preview of the show, check out the band’s recent NPR Tiny Desk concert performance. Tickets start at $22. --Perry

8 p.m., Horseshoe Casino's Bluesville, 1021 Casino Center Dr, Robinsonville, MS

Sunday

Acoustic Sunday Live! presents The Memphis Concert to Protect Our Aquifer: Bobby Rush, Tom Chapin, Shemekia Copeland, Dave Bromberg and John Kilzer all will play at this benefit concert organized by local attorney Bruce Newman. Tickets are $50 for general admission, $100 for VIP. To read more about Newman and his concert series, click here. 

7 p.m., St. John’s United Methodist Church, 1207 Peabody Ave.

Monday

Jim Henson's Holiday Special at Malco Paradiso: It's been a while since Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas has been on TV, but Muppet aficionados (and anyone else with a soft spot for the Christmas-themed TV specials of yore) shouldn't miss this screened of a remastered version as a double feature with The Bells of Fraggle Rock. There's also talk of an all-new featurette and a special guest, but Emmet Otter's O. Henry inspired yarn is the main attraction here, as is the technical mastery of the Henson crew. Kids will love it, and you will too. -- Kevin Lipe

7 p.m. Malco Paradiso Cinema Grill & IMAX, 584 S Mendenhall Road. Tickets are $11 for children, $13.50 for adults. 



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