Pittsburgh Happenings: December 2023

December in Pittsburgh means a month of holiday celebrations, especially when it comes to the arts. Take your family out to explore the winter wonderland of the city through musicals, plays, ballets, art showcases, and so much more.

Mrs. Doubtfire

Benedum Center, November 28-December 3

Catch one of the most hilarious musicals based on the movie starring Robin Williams. It’s a fun theatrical experience made for the whole family. Plus, don’t miss Rob McClure reprising his Tony-nominated Broadway performance for this run of shows. 

Diving Within

Alloy Studios, December 1-2

Through the use of dance, music, drag, performative storytelling, and audio from first-person interviews with trans women, the healing process of the Black community is showcased in this moving and innovative performance. 

An aerial view of a large crowd of people walking through different vendor booths.
Photo courtesy of Handmade Arcade

Handmade Arcade Winter Marketplace

David L. Lawrence Convention Center, December 1-2

Over 200 of the best of the best in the region’s creative maker community come together for this annual holiday marketplace. Check out hands-on demonstrations, DJs, raffles, and, of course, plenty of small business shopping. 

Christmas on the Farm

Freedom Farms, December 2-3

Kick off the month of December with Santa at Freedom Farms. With over 50 local craft vendors, in addition to activities like tractor rides and a corn pit, you and the kiddos can launch into the holidays. 

Welcome Dinner and Artist Talk with Slowdanger

Alloy Studios, December 4

SUPERCELL, a multidisciplinary quintet performance responding to climate change, premiers in Pittsburgh on December 8 and 9. Kelly Strayhorn Theater celebrates the upcoming dance performance with a dinner and talks with the artists behind the project. 

One-Long Bridge

New Hazlett Theater, December 7-8

Our voices are an influential and beautiful asset—One-Long Bridge taps into this power to explore immigration, race, and resilience in the Asian American experience. 

A Christmas Story: The Play

O’Reilly Theater, December 7-23

What wacky situation has Ralphie Parker gotten into now? The hilarious Christmas classic comes back to life by popular demand— leg lamp and all.

Two dancers dressed in colorful red, yellow, and blue outfits striking a pose on stage.

The Nutcracker

Benedum Center, December 8-28

We’re seeing visions of the Sugar Plum Fairy, Marie, and her Nutcracker Prince, dance in our heads. Don’t miss this holiday tradition for the city of Pittsburgh. 

100 Ways to Cross the Border and Borderhole

Carnegie Museum of Art, December 9

Presented by filmmaker Amber Bemak, this film series offers alternate stories to those shown in mainstream media. You’ll learn true portraits from the US-Mexico border, the relationship between North and South America, and more. 

The Muppet Christmas Carol

Heinz Hall, December 9

Can Scrooge learn from the error of his selfish ways? Maybe with the help of the Muppets, he can. Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra presents the complete film with a live musical score. 

Theater On Tap

O’Reilly Theater, December 10

Ahead of Pittsburgh Public Theater’s performance of A Christmas Story: The Play, Barrel and Flow’s Day Bracey visits for a curated beer tasting with guests. 

A woman portraying Tina Turner sings on stage in a blue dress to highlight the Pittsburgh production.
Photo courtesy of One Night of Tina

One Night of Tina

Carnegie Library Music Hall, December 10

The world may have lost music legend Tina Turner earlier this year, but the Queen of Rock and Roll’s biggest hits can be heard in a live setting for one high-octane tribute night. 

Rebecca Makkai

Virtual, December 11

No need to leave the warmth of your home to see Rebecca Makkai in the Pittsburgh Arts and Lectures Ten Evening Series. Grab a blanket and experience the author of the National Book Award finalist The Great Believers, appearing virtually. Don’t forget to dive into her latest, I Have Some Questions for You, ahead of time. 

Highmark Holiday Pops

Heinz Hall, December 15-23

You can’t spell the most wonderful time of the year without Highmark Holiday Pops. Well, maybe you can. But it’s more fun to experience this musical Pittsburgh holiday tradition featuring all your favorite holiday songs.

Chatham Baroque Alegría

Hicks Memorial Chapel and Rodef Shalom, December 16-17

Take pleasure in the delights of the holidays with the sounds of Baroque Spain and the Americas played during Hispanic colonial times. 

Three guitarists play on center stage under blue lights with a huge audience in front of them and fire on the sides as a promotion for Pittsburgh.
Photo courtesy of Trans-Siberian Orchestra

Trans-Siberian Orchestra: The Ghosts Of Christmas Eve

PPG Paints Arena, December 16

Christmas meets rock and heavy metal for a laser-filled performance you won’t soon forget. If electric violins don’t get you excited, then what will?

Highmark First Night Pittsburgh

Cultural District, December 31

Here’s to hoping 2024 is even better than 2023—ring in the new year in the heart of Downtown Pittsburgh, surrounded by lights, music, and good energy.

Story by Kylie Thomas

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