Christmas Ballet
No Drosselmeyer here.
David Allen

We love our holiday traditions: watching Love Actually for the 17th time, taking a spin around the ice rink, mixing up a potent bourbon punch.

But shaking up that old routine can help you discover some untapped yuletide joy, especially when it comes to seeing a festive new performance. Here, a few out-of-the-box suggestions.

If tutus are your bag Sick of the Sugar Plum Fairy? Smuin Ballet?s The Christmas Ballet starts off traditional (think jetés to classical tunes in the first act) before getting more contemporary after intermission (?Santa Baby? and "Blue Christmas" in the second). Tickets start at $30. December 18 to 28 at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (700 Howard St.)

If choral music moves you Yes, the SF Symphony?s rendition of ?O Holy Night? is magnificent. But the singers in the Grammy-winning Chanticleer chorus give them a run for their money, belting out ?Angels We Have Heard on High? among other hymns. Tickets start at $35. December 13 through 23; various locations

If you?ve got a thing for Scrooge The classic Dickens tale gets a clever twist in the Marin Theatre Company?s Jacob Marley?s Christmas Carol, which tells the story from the old ghost?s perspective in a family-friendly performance that?s full of laughs. Tickets start at $20. Through December 22. (397 Miller Ave., Mill Valley)

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