Celtic fiddler Eileen Ivers and her band, Immigrant Soul, will present "An Nollaig: An Irish Christmas" as part of the SFA College of Fine Arts' University Series at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, in W.M. Turner Auditorium. Tickets are currently on sale for all of the holiday events offered by the college in December. (Photo by Luke Ratray)

NACOGDOCHES, TEXAS - "An Nollaig: An Irish Christmas," starring Celtic fiddler champion Irene Ivers, and "Messiah" top the list of holiday events offered by the Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts in the month of December.

Other events include the classic Christmas opera "Amahl and the Night Visitors," The "New" Original Cast's "A Real Hometown Family Christmas Spectacle," a holiday-inspired percussion concert, a radio broadcast of "The Gift of the Magi," and the SFA Friends of the Visual Arts' "Hooked on Art" scholarship fund-raiser.

The SFA School of Music will kick off the holiday events with Gian Carlo Menotti's "Amahl and the Night Visitors" at 9 and 11 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 2, and at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3. All performances are in Cole Concert Hall. The 45-minute opera, written in English, tells the touching story of a crippled boy and his mother who are visited by the Three Kings during their journey to find the Christ Child.

The School of Theatre's musical cabaret troupe, The "New" Original Cast, will present an all-new musical as part of the Nacogdoches Nine Flags Festival. "A Real Hometown Family Christmas Spectacle," conceived by the troupe's new director Dr. Jason Davids Scott, celebrates families, hometowns and the unexpected hilarity that makes holidays the most magical time of the year. Show times are 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 2; 3 and 9 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 3; and 2 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 4. All shows are at The Cole Art Center, 329 E. Main St.

On Tuesday, Dec. 6, the SFA School of Music will present "Percussion in the Pines" at 7:30 p.m. in Cole Concert Hall. During this popular annual event, the SFA Percussion Ensemble and Steel Band will perform "holiday songs with a percussive twist," said Scott Harris, SFA director of percussion studies.

At 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 8, radio listeners can hear the premiere broadcasting of the School of Theatre's "The Gift of the Magi" on the university's FM radio station, KSAU, located at 90.1 on the dial. Theatre students and faculty recorded O. Henry's classic story about a young married couple and the Christmas gifts they secretly purchase for one another. Additional broadcasts are still to be arranged.

Glass ornaments hand decorated by area artists for the SFA Friends of the Visual Arts' "Hooked on Art" scholarship fund-raiser will be on display at The Cole Art Center from Thursday, Dec. 1, to Friday, Dec. 9, and available for purchase through a silent auction. Winners will be announced at the event's closing reception that begins at 6 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 9.

The SFA combined choirs and orchestra, along with the Nacogdoches Community Chorus will present G.F. Handel's "Messiah" at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, in W.M. Turner Auditorium. The always-popular event will feature student soloists and close with an audience Christmas carol sing-along.

As part of its 2011-2012 University Series, the College of Fine Arts will present Eileen Ivers and her band, Immigrant Soul, in "An Nollaig: An Irish Christmas" at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.

"The entire family will enjoy this high-energy concert that captures the spirit and magic of the season with traditional Irish songs, original tunes and holiday favorites," said Diane J. Flynn, SFA Box Office manager.

Tickets for any of the holiday events can be purchased online at www.finearts.sfasu.edu or by calling the Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.