Jackie Grigg and Joel Crowley in rehearsal for Rodgers and Hanmerstein’s ‘Carousel’ at Good Theater. Photo by Hannah Daly

7 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 7:30 p.m. Friday, 3 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Through Dec. 4. St. Lawrence Arts Center, 76 Congress St., Portland, $40. goodtheater.com
“Carousel” is among Rodgers & Hammerstein’s finest musicals, and Good Theater is bringing it to life in Portland, complete with twin-piano arrangement. The show, set in a coastal Maine village, features a cast of 18 singers and actors. It first premiered on Broadway in 1945 and is famous for musical numbers like “This Was a Real Nice Clambake,” “If I Loved You,” “June is Bustin’ Out All Over” and “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” The Good Theater production is directed by Brian P. Allen, with choreography by Betsy Melarkey Dunphy and ballet choreography by Neil Shipman.

There will be plenty of shopping opportunities on and around State Street in Portland on Saturday. Imtmphoto/Shutterstock.com

State Street Holiday Stroll
9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. State Street (between Congress and Danforth streets), Portland. maineirish.com
It’s time for the annual State Street Holiday Stroll, during which you’ll find plenty of holiday cheer along with lots of shopping opportunities. Stops on your walk include State Street Church, the Maine Irish Heritage Center, The Cathedral of St. Luke, 75 State Street, the Portland Fire Museum and likely some other State Street neighbors. Think of it as a spread-out holiday fair with arts, crafts, food, books, toys and an array of other terrific gifts. You’ll also find music, caroling, baked goods, lunch items, live Irish step-dancing and pipers, and photo ops with Slugger, Crusher and Santa.

Kent Axell. Photo by Bill Axell of Axell Photography

Kent Axell
7 p.m. Sunday. Harry P. Garland II Auditorium, Thornton Academy, 438 Main St., Saco, $15, $12 students, must purchase in advance. onthestagetickets.com/show/thornton-academy
For an enthralling experience of multi-layered entertainment, head to Saco to see Maine native and current Las Vegas resident Kent Axell. The show will be packed with Axell’s magic and mentalism, and audience participation is a huge part of it. Axell’s appearance is being presented by and will benefit Saco Main Street, a nonprofit that’s all about its city’s arts and cultural vibrancy. Will Axell read your mind and enchant you with his magic and psychological illusions? There’s one way to find out!

Dove of Peace from Nutcracker! Magical Christmas Ballet. Photo by Ron Wyatt

Nutcracker! Magical Christmas Ballet
7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15. State Theatre, 609 Congress St., Portland, $31.50 to $81.50. statetheatreportland.com
A favorite holiday tradition comes to life on the State Theatre stage with Talmi Entertainment’s Nutcracker! Magical Christmas Ballet. Now in its 30th year, the show features giant puppets, dazzling acrobatics and sensational, hand-sewn costumes, and the troupe includes dancers from Ukraine, Japan, Italy and Turkey. You can likely already hear Tchaikovsky’s score in your head as visions of sugarplum fairies dance in your head. It may seem early in the season for such full-on holiday immersion, but couldn’t we all use a little joy sooner rather than later? Grab tickets and make it happen.

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