Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre "Nutcracker" open house at PBT headquarters, 2900 Liberty Ave., Strip District, noon to 3 p.m. Catch the holiday spirit with a family open house where guests can dance "The Nutcracker" with school instructors, sample sweets, have photos taken with characters from the ballet and create "Nutcracker" crafts, courtesy of the Pittsburgh Center for Creative Reuse. Radio Disney also will be on site with music, prizes and games. Admission is free and open to the public. Those who bring a nonperishable food item to donate to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank will be entered to win a Nutcracker gift basket featuring tickets to a performance. For more info: www.pbt.org.
Tea Obreht discusses her first novel "The Tiger's Wife" as part of the Literary Evenings, Monday Night Lecture Series at Carnegie Music Hall, 4400 Forbes Ave., Oakland, at 7:30 p.m. Ms. Obreht wrote the novel, selected by The New York Times as one of the five best of 2011, at age 25. Tickets: $15-$35, www.pittsburghlectures.org or 412-622-8866.
Several years ago, Manfred Honeck, music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, designed a holiday concert format designed for the festive Thanksgiving weekend. Its focus is on the light and fun waltzes and polkas of the Strauss family. This year the conductor adds to that the brilliance of Grammy Award-winning pianist Yefim Bronfman, who performs Beethoven's "Emperor" Piano Concerto. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2:30 p.m. next Sunday at Heinz Hall, Downtown. Tickets start at $20; 412-392-4900 or www.pittsburghsymphony.org.
Suite Life: A Billy Strayhorn Birthday Bash at the Kelly-Strayhorn Theater, 5941 Penn Ave., East Liberty, at 8 p.m. Jazz great Sean Jones leads the Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra in a tribute to internationally acclaimed pianist and composer Billy Strayhorn. The fifth annual Suite Life event features a 17-piece instrumental and vocal ensemble to honor Strayhorn's enduring legacy through his extraordinary music. For tickets, $15-$25, www.kelly-strayhorn.org.