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Mark your calendar: Upright Citizens comedy
Columbia City Ballet brings "The Nutcracker" back Nov. 27

The Touring Company of the Upright Citizens Brigade, an improv comedy troupe, stops into the Lucas Theatre for a just–announced show Oct. 5. The company has produced prodigious talents you’ve heard of, including Amy Poehler, Horatio Sanz, Rob Corddry and Ed Helms (they won’t be here, but the UCB is known far and wide for “discovering” comedic talent, so tomorrow’s big stars might just be in the cast we get).

Admission to the 8 p.m. show is $10, or $5 with a SCAD ID (that’s the sponsoring school).

Film Festival, take one

Although the big feature films and big–time guests from the movie world have yet to be announced as of this writing, the Savannah Film Festival’s competition films cover a wide range of subject – feature, short and documentary – and it’s a safe bet the world will be reading about at least two of them when Oscar season rolls around.

The festival takes place Oct. 30–Nov. 6. Watch this space for the full schedule, which we should have within the week.

In the meantime, the competition films include:

Beneath Hill 60. An Australia–made, fact–based drama about a Queensland miner digging a tunnel under the enemy in World War I. Directed by actor Jeremy Sims.

Night Catches Us. Writer/director Tanya Hamilton’s drama about a former member of the Black Panther movement (Anthony Mackie of The Hurt Locker) who returns to his Philadelphia neighborhood after several mysterious years away.

The Kid. British drama about an impoverished young man who finds his place in the dark and seamy world of organized crime. Rupert Friend (The Young Victoria) stars.

Earthwork. From writer/director Chris Ordal, it’s the true story of “urban cop artist” Stan Herd, who travels to New York City in order to create a unique rural artwork on urban land owned by one Donald Trump.

The documentaries entered in competition include The Desert of Forbidden Art, Dressed, Automorphosis and To Whom it May Concern: Ka Shen’s Journey.

See for details.

Double your Nutcrackers

The Columbia City Ballet’s big, expensive – and perennial – production of The Nutcracker is coming back to the Johnny Mercer Theatre. The performance will be Nov. 27, at 5:30 p.m.

With a professional cast of 35 dancers, the Columbia City Ballet has been touring The Nutcracker around the South since 1978; it’s been a Thanksgiving–weekend tradition here since the 1980s. The Savannah production, as always, will include about 40 local dancers, who audition for the roles.

Tickets are $20–$42.

In more Nutcracker news, the Savannah Danse Theatre’s annual production has just been announced – for the very same day. With the participation of the Savannah Philharmonic, the SDT show will be at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 27 at the Lucas Theatre.