Cirque du Soleil: Wintuk
The Theater at Madison Square Garden, 4 Penn Plaza, nr. 32nd St.; 212-465-6741
The whimsical, acrobatic show follows a city child on his quest for snow and adventure, utilizing everything from trampolines to adorable shaggy puppets. This is the final season in New York, so grab tickets while you still can.
• Dates: Nov. 17–Jan. 2
• Price: $30–$220
George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker
David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center, 63rd St. at Columbus Ave; 212-870-5570
Since 1954 the New York City Ballet's trademarked production has been transporting children of all ages to a dreamlike world of toy soldiers, sugarplum fairies, and waltzing snowflakes. (Also, there was that one Macaulay Culkin movie.)
• Dates: Nov. 26–Jan. 2
• Price: $40–$225
New York Philharmonic: Handel’s Messiah
Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, 10 Lincoln Center Plaza, nr. 65th St.; 212-875-5030
It's impossible not to feel the holiday spirit when the swelling sounds of this classic oratorio's "Hallelujah" chorus fills the room. There will also be a limited-space Preconcert Talk, hosted by composer Joelle Wallach and beginning one hour before each performance.
• Dates: Dec. 14–Dec. 18
• Price: $32–$112
Radio City Christmas Spectacular
Radio City Music Hall, 1260 Sixth Ave., nr. 50th St.; 212-247-4777
Since 1933 the iconic leg-kicking Rockettes have shared the stage with fireworks and other awe-inducing ephemera. There are over 200 chances to catch them this year, so what are you waiting for?
• Dates: Through Dec. 30
Donny and Marie: A Broadway Christmas
Marquis Theater, 1535 Broadway, nr. 46th St.; 212-382-0100
The wholesome brother-sister duo shares the stage on the Great White Way for the first time in A Broadway Christmas, their show of standards and original material. Maybe if you're lucky, Donny will bust out some of those winning Dancing With the Stars moves.
• Dates: Dec. 9–Dec. 30
• Price: $60–$145