Christmas is the perfect time for musicals," said TJ Davis, writer and director at Pickleville Playhouse, based in Northern Utah.

Pickleville first set up roots in Garden City, near Bear Lake, when Davis' grandparents built the playhouse in 1977. The family business has since blossomed. In 2007, it started putting on a yearly Christmas production at the Eccles Conference Center on Utah State University's campus.

Davis explained that the time of year calls for a belief in things magical and extraordinary, paving the way for a particular enjoyment of the arts, especially musicals.

He said Pickleville has a faithful following not only to its summer programs, but also to its Christmas musical — which is a different original production every year. Davis said cast members are "seriously talented people," triple and quadruple threats providing an evening of singing, dancing, acting and comedy.

"We try to do shows that everyone can enjoy," he said of the Christmas production. He said Pickleville gets a lot of positive feedback, but the best comments are along the lines of, "'I hate musicals … but we come to everything you guys do.'"

Many Cache and Salt Lake Valley residents alike have made the program a Christmas tradition over the last five years.

Davis believes Pickleville has something more to offer in the way of Christmas traditions.

"The Nutcracker is really awesome," he said to give an example. "People are used to going to that and it doesn't really change each year. We try to keep it fresh."

Whether you wish to stick to your guns with a family tradition like "The Nutcracker," "White Christmas" or an event at Temple Square, or you venture to try something like Pickleville's original production, Utah's arts scene has plenty to offer for the holidays.

Theater/Musical Theater

"White Christmas," Nov. 9-Dec. 3, dates and times vary, Pardoe Theatre, Brigham Young University, Provo, $16-$21 (801-422-4322 or www.byuarts.com)

"It's a Wonderful Life," Nov. 17-Dec. 31, dates and times vary, Desert Star Theater, 4861 S. State, Murray $9.95-$14.95 for children, $13.95-$42.95 for adults, dinner option available (801-266-2600 or www.desertstar.biz/)

"Savior of the World," Nov. 18-Dec. 31, Tuesday-Saturday at 7:30 p.m., Saturday matinees at 2 p.m., Conference Center Theater, Temple Square, Salt Lake City, $5-$8, ages 8 and up (801-570-0080 or www.lds.org/events)

"The Grouch Who Stole Christmas," Nov. 25-Dec. 26, dates and times vary, Off Broadway Theatre, 272 S. Main, Salt Lake City, $8 for children, $16 for adults, student discounts available (801-355-4628 or www.theobt.org)

"The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey," Nov. 25-Dec. 17, Wednesday-Saturday, 7:30 p.m., SCERA Center for the Arts, 745 S. State, Orem, $12 for adults, $10 for children, senior citizens and students (801-225-2787 or www.scera.org)

"Scrooge: A Christmas Carol," Nov. 25-Dec 23, Friday, Saturdays and Sundays at 7:30 p.m.; nightly performances Dec. 19-23. Terrace Plaza Playhouse, 99 E. 4700 South, Ogden, $10-$12 for adults, $79-$9 for children (801-393-0070 or www.terraceplayhouse.com)

"A Christmas Carol," Nov. 25-Dec. 2, Monday-Saturday, 7:30 p.m., CenterPoint Legacy Theatre, 525 N. 400 West, Centerville, $15-$18, (801-298-1302 or www.centerpointtheatre.org)

"A Christmas Carol," Nov. 25-Dec.17, Monday, Friday and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m., 2 p.m. matinees on Dec. 3 and 10, Heritage Community Theatre, 2505 S. Hwy. 89, Perry, $8 for children, $9 for adults, no children under 3 (www.heritagetheatreutah.com)

"12:25: A Merry Musical Comedy," Dec. 1-23, dates and times vary, Pickleville Playhouse at Eccles Conference Center, Utah State University, Logan, $16-$32 for adults, $12-$21 for children, dinner option available (435-755-0968 or www.picklevilleplayhouse.com/)

"A Christmas Carol," Dec. 2-23, Monday-Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 3 and 7:30 p.m., Hale Center Theater Orem, 225 W. 400 North, Orem, $16-$20 for adults, $12-$16 for children (801-226-8600 or www.haletheater.org )

"Joyful Noise," Dec. 2-17, Friday-Saturday, 7:30 p.m., Thursday-Friday beginning Dec. 8, Covey Center for the Arts, 425 W. Center Street, Provo, $12 (801-852-7007 or www.coveyarts.org)

"White Christmas," Dec. 2-17, dates and times vary, Old Barn Community Theater, 3605 Bigler Road, Collinston (Garland), $7-$25 (435-458-2276 or www.oldbarn.org)

"A Christmas Carol," Dec. 3-23, Monday-Saturday, 8 p.m., Saturdays 11 a.m., 2 p.m., 5 p.m., weekdays 5 p.m. beginning Dec. 8, Hale Centre Theatre, 3333 S. Decker Lake Dr., West Valley, $26-30 for adults, $17-$21 for children (801-984-9000 or www.halecentretheatre.org)

"Farley Family Xmas," Dec. 15-17, Dec. 19, 7:30 p.m., Ragan Theatre, Utah Valley University, Orem, $3-$12 (801-863-8797 or www.uvu.edu/ragan)

"Holiday Night Live 2011," Dec. 15-17, 7:30 p.m., Noorda Theatre, UVU, Orem, $5 (801-863-4636 or www.uvu.edu/theatre/noorda)

"The Thrillionaires: A Dickens of a Tale," Dec. 23, 8 p.m., Covey Center for the Arts, 425 W. Center Street, Provo, $10, senior and student discounts available (801-852-7007 or www.coveyarts.org)

"The Game's Afoot," Dec. 31-Feb. 4, 2012, New Year's Eve celebration performance at 10 p.m., Hale Centre Theatre, 3333 S. Decker Lake Dr., West Valley, $44 (801-984-9000 or www.halecentretheatre.org)

"The 39 Steps," Dec. 31-Feb.11, 2012, New Year's Eve celebration performance at 10 p.m. Hale Center Theater Orem, 225 W. 400 North, Orem, $33-$35 (801-226-8600 or www.haletheater.org )

Dance

"The Nutcracker," Ballet West, presented by the Ogden Symphony-Ballet Association, Nov. 25, 7 p.m.; Nov. 26, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., Val A. Browning Center for the Performing Arts, Weber State University, $14-$39, (801-399-9214 or www.symphonyballet.org)

"Christmas Around the World," Dec. 2, 7:30 p.m.; Dec 3, 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Marriott Center, BYU, Provo, $10-25, (801-422-2981 or www.byutickets.com)

"The Nutcracker," Ballet West, Dec. 2-28, dates and times vary, Capitol Theatre, 50 W. 200 South Salt Lake City, $19-$75 (801-355-2787 or www.arttix.org)

"The Nutcracker Ballet," Julie Moffit Ballet, Dec. 9, 7 p.m.; Dec 10, 12 p.m. and 7 p.m., Peery's Egyptian Theater, 2415 Washington Blvd., $7 for Children 2-12, $10 for adults, "Sugar Plum Tea" event after matinee (801-689-8700 or www.peerysegyptiantheater.com)

"The Nutcracker," Utah Regional Ballet, Dec. 10-20, dates and times vary, Covey Center for the Arts, 425 W. Center Street, Provo, $16-$26, ages 4 and up(801-852-7007 or www.coveyarts.org)

"The Nutcracker," Imagine Ballet Theatre, Dec. 14-19, 7:30 p.m. 2 p.m. matinee on Dec. 17, Peery's Egyptian Theater, 2415 Washington Blvd., Ogden, $12-$25, (801-689-8700 or www.peerysegyptiantheater.com)

"The Nutty Nutcracker," Ballet West, Dec. 30, 7 p.m.; Dec. 31, 2 p.m. Capitol Theatre, 50 W. 200 South Salt Lake City, $19 - $75 (801-355-2787 or www.arttix.org)

Music

"TubaChristmas," free events in Provo, Ceder City and Logan, dates and times vary (www.tubachristmas.com)

Utah Baroque Ensemble Christmas concerts, Nov. 20, 7:30 p.m., 800 E. 600 North, Orem, Dec. 5, 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Orem Public Library, 58 North State Street Orem, free events (www.utahbaroque.org/ube)

"GLORIA! The Life of Christ, Part I," Millennium Choir and Lex de Azevedo, Nov. 26, 7:30 p.m., Salt Lake Tabernacle, Temple Square, Salt Lake City, event is sold out, standby line for free admission will form at the flagpole on Temple Square, ages 8 and up (801-570-0080 or www.lds.org/events)

"Christmas on Temple Square," Nov. 26-Dec. 24, variety of free events performed at the Assembly Hall, Joseph Smith Memorial Building, Conference Center, Family History Library, Church Office Building lobby, North Visitor's Center and Tabernacle (www.lds.org/events)

Messiah Sing-in with the Utah Symphony, Nov. 26-27, 7 p.m., Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City, $15-$32, (801-355-2787 or www.utahsymphony.org)

"The Forgotten Carols" 20th anniversary tour, in Utah Nov. 29-Dec. 17, dates, times, and locations vary, about $10-$32 depending on venue (www.forgottencarols.com)

Utah Valley Symphony family Christmas concert, Nov. 30-Dec. 1, 7:30 p.m. Covey Center for the Arts, 425 W. Center, Provo, $12, senior, student and group discounts available (801-852-7007 or www.coveyarts.org)

"Season of the Mists," Salt Lake Symphonic Winds, Nov. 30, 7:30 p.m., All Saints Episcopal Church, 1710 Foothill Drive, Salt Lake City, free event (801-214-5442 or www.slsw.org)

"Celebration of Christmas," Brigham Young University Philharmonic and combined choirs, Dec. 2, 7:30 p.m.; Dec. 3, 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., De Jong Concert Hall, BYU, Provo, $16, student and senior discounts available, (801-422-4322 or www.byuarts.com)

Ryan Shupe and the Rubberband Christmas Concert, Dec. 2-3, 7:30 p.m. Covey Center for the Arts, 425 W. Center Street, Provo, $15-$18 (801-852-7007 or www.coveyarts.org)

Westminster's Chamber Singers holiday concert, Dec. 2-3, 7:30 p.m., Vieve Gore Concert Hall in the Emma Eccles Jones Conservatory, 1840 S. 1300 East, Salt Lake City (801-832-2457 or www.westminstercollege.edu/culturalevents)

Messiah sing-in with the Timpanogos Festival Orchestra and Chorus, Dec. 2, 7:30 p.m., Alpine Tabernacle, 110 E. State, American Fork, free event, no children under 8 (801-319-2558 or www.tcostrings.com/)

"Canticles and Carols: Music of the Angels," Salt Lake Choral Artists, Dec. 3, 2 and 7:30 p.m., Libby Gardner Concert Hall, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, $20 for adults, $8 for students (801-232-7521 or www.saltlakechoralartists.org)

Choral Arts Society of Utah, holiday pops concert featuring One Voice Children's Choir, Dec. 3, 7:30 p.m., Cottonwood High School, 5715 S. 1300 East, Murray, $15 (801-467-8499 or www.smithstix.org)

Combined Weber State University Choirs and Weber State Symphony Orchestra holiday concert, Dec. 4, 5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m., St. Joseph Catholic Church, 24th St., Adams Ave., Ogden, $6-$7, (801-626-6431 or www.weberstatetickets.com)

Holiday celebration with the Utah Symphony, Dec. 5, 7 p.m., Thanksgiving Point Show Barn, 3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi, $15 (801-768-4900 or www.thanksgivingpoint.org)

Southern Utah University holiday choral concert, Dec. 5, 7:30 p.m., Heritage Theatre, 105 N. 100 East, Cedar City, $4-$8 (435-586-7872 or www.suu.edu/pva/arts/)

"A Jon Schmidt Christmas," Dec. 6, 7:30 p.m., Peery's Egyptian Theater, 2415 Washington Blvd., $20-$30, (801-689-8700 or www.peerysegyptiantheater.com)

Southern Utah University Wind Symphony concert, Dec. 7, 7:30 p.m., Heritage Theatre, 105 N. 100 East, Cedar City, $3-$6 (435-586-7872 or www.suu.edu/pva/arts/)

Park City Winter Series: Holiday celebration with the Utah Symphony, Dec. 9, 7:30 p.m., Eccles Center, 1750 Kearns Blvd., Park City, $17-$51 (801-355-2787 or www.utahsymphony.org/)

University choirs holiday concert, Dec. 9-10, 7:30 p.m., Libby Gardner Concert Hall, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, $3-$7 (801-581-6762 or www.music.utah.edu)

"A Kurt Bestor Christmas," Dec. 9-10, times vary, Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City, $17.50-$33.50 (801-355-2787 or www.arttix.org)

Salt Lake Men's Choir Christmas concert, Dec. 9-10, 7:30 p.m.; Dec. 11, 4 p.m., First Baptist Church of Salt Lake City, 777 S. 1300 East, Salt Lake City, $10 (www.saltlakemenschoir.org )

Sounds of the Season Chorale and Orchestra, Dec. 9-10, 7 p.m., Bingham High School Auditorium, 2160 W. 10400 South, South Jordan, free event (801-254-3742 or sjc.utah.gov)

"Christmas Tapestry," performance by Blend 5, Dec. 10, 3 p.m.; Dec. 12, 7:30 p.m., Eccles Center for the Performing Arts, Snow College, Ephraim, $8-$10 (435-283-7472 or www.snow.edu/music)

"Messiah," The Orchestra of Southern Utah, Dec. 11-12, 7:30 p.m., Heritage Theatre, 105 N. 100 East, Cedar City, free event (866-882-3327, 435-865-2822 or www.orchestraofsouthernutah.org)

WSU Alumni Singers holiday concert, Dec. 11-12, 7:30 p.m., Holy Family Catholic Church, 1100 E. 5550 South, Ogden, enter with a donation of food/money for the needy, (801 626-7535 or www.weber.edu/performingarts).

"DAC The Halls: Christmas with Alex Boye," Dec. 12, 7 p.m., Layton High School auditorium, 440 Wasatch Drive, Layton, $6-$25 (801-546-8575 or www.davisarts.org )

"Here Comes Santa Claus," Utah Symphony, presented by the Ogden Symphony-Ballet Association, Dec. 12, 7 p.m., Val A. Browning Center for the Performing Arts, WSU, Ogden, $8 for children and $12 for adults (801-399-9214 or www.symphonyballet.org)

"Messiah," Utah Voices, Dec. 12, 7:30 p.m., Libby Gardner Concert Hall, University of Utah, Salt Lake City (www.utahvoices.org)

"Carols and Lullabies," Utah Chamber Artists, Dec. 13, 7:30 p.m., Libby Gardner Concert Hall, U of U, Salt Lake City, $15-$17.50, student discounts available (801-581-7100 or www.kingtix.com)

Voice Male Christmas concert, Dec. 13-14, 7:30 p.m., Thanksgiving Point Show Barn, 3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi, $14 (801-768-4900 or www.thanksgivingpoint.org)

"Jazz at the Station: Jingle Bell Jazz vocalists and More," Dec. 14, 7 p.m., Grand Lobby, Ogden's Union Station, 2501 Wall Avenue, Ogden, free event (801-626-6431 or www.weber.edu/performingarts)

Holiday Celebration with Cirque de la Symphonie, Utah Symphony, presented by the Ogden Symphony-Ballet Association, Dec. 15, 7:30 p.m., Val A. Browning Center for the Performing Arts, Weber State University, Ogden, $25-$33, no children under 8 (801-399-9214 or www.symphonyballet.org)

Christmas with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square featuring Nathan Gunn and Jane Seymour, Dec. 15-17, 8 p.m.; Dec. 18, 9:30 a.m., Conference Center, Temple Square, Salt Lake City, event is sold out, standby line for free admission will form at the flagpole on Temple Square, ages 8 and up (801-570-0080 or www.lds.org/events)

Holiday Celebration with Cirque de la Symphonie, Utah Symphony, Dec. 16-17, 8 p.m., Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City, $27-$85 (801-355-2787 or www.utahsymphony.org/)

"A Jon Schmidt Christmas," Dec. 16-17, 7:30 p.m., Kingsbury Hall, U of U, Salt Lake City, $18.50, (801-581-7100 or www.kingsburyhall.org)

Tuacahn Amphitheatre Christmas Concert Series, featuring Eric Dode, Jon Schmidt, Peter Breinholt, Alex Boye and Kurt Bestor, Dec. 16-21, dates and times vary, Hafen Theatre at Tuacahn, 1100 Tuacahn Drive, Ivins $15.50-$24.50, (1-800-746-9882 or www.tuacahn.org/)

"Here Comes Santa Claus," Utah Symphony, Dec. 17, 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., Abravanel Hall 123 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City, $6-$20 (801-355-2787 or www.utahsymphony.org/)

"Messiah," Oratorio Society of Utah and Nachtmusik Chamber Orchestra, Dec. 17, 7:30 p.m., Cottonwood Presbyterian Church, 1580 E. Vine Street, Murray, free (just at the Murray event), Dec. 18, 6 p.m., Libby Gardner Concert Hall, U of U, Salt Lake City, $10 (801-581-7100 or www.kingtix.com)

"My Kind of Christmas," David Archuleta, Dec. 19, 8 p.m., Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City, $27.50-$35 (801-355-2787 or www.arttix.org)

Miscellaneous

"Trees of Diversity" multicultural exhibit, Nov. 17- Dec. 27, Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Utah Cultural Celebration Center, 1355 W. 3100 South, West Valley City, no tickets necessary (801-965-5100 or www.culturalcelebration.org)

"Shades of White" gallery stroll, Nov. 18 and Dec. 2, 6-9 p.m., Art at the Main, Salt Lake City Library, 210 E. 400 South, free no tickets necessary (801-363-4088 or www.aratthemain.com)

Phillips Gallery annual holiday group show, Nov. 18-Jan. 13, Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m.-6 p.m., Saturdays 11 a.m.-4 p.m., 444 E. 200 South, Salt Lake City, no tickets necessary (801-364-8284 or www.phillips-gallery.com)

Bountiful/Davis Art Center 37th annual holiday show and sale, plus family art nights, Nov. 18-Dec. 23, dates and times vary, 745 S. Main, Bountiful, no tickets necessary (801-292-0367 or www.bdac.org)

Artspace City Center Holiday Show, Nov. 18- Dec. 19, dates and hours vary, Art Access Building, 230 S. 500 West, Salt Lake City, no tickets necessary (801-328-0703 or www.uaf.org)

"Christmas in Nauvoo," Nov. 28, Dec. 5, 5:30 p.m., Education in Zion Gallery, Joseph F. Smith Building, BYU, Provo, free event (lib.byu.edu/sites/educationinzion/)

Annual Holiday Pottery Sale, Nov. 28-29, 10 a.m.-5p.m., Sugarhouse Garden Center, 1602 E. 2100 South, Salt Lake City, no tickets necessary (www.clayartsutah.org/)

Midway Nativity exhibit, Dec. 2-5, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., The Homestead Resort, 700 N. Homestead Dr, Midway, free event (435-654-1102 or www.homesteadresort.com)

Ice sculpting demonstrations, Dec. 5, 12, 19, 6-8:30p.m., Water Tower Plaza, Thanksgiving Point, 3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi, free event (www.thanksgivingpoint.org)

Holiday Art Open House at Red Butte Gardens, Dec. 3-4, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Red Butte Garden, 300 Wakara Way, University of Utah campus, no tickets necessary, (801-585-0556 or www.redbuttegarden.org)

Art Barn holiday craft show and sale, Dec. 3-4, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Art Barn/Finch Lane Gallery, 54 Finch Lane, Salt Lake City, no tickets necessary, (801-596-5000 or www.slcgov.com/arts)

America Indian holiday arts exhibit and sale, Dec 3-4, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., 120 W. 1300 South, Salt Lake City, no tickets necessary, (801-486-4877 or www.iwic.org)

Utah Museum of Fine Arts holiday art sales, Dec. 3-4, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Dec. 7, 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., 410 Campus Center Drive, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, no tickets necessary (801-581-7332 or www.umfa.utah.edu)

Eccles Community Art Center holiday open house, Dec. 9, 5-7p.m., 2580 Jefferson Ave., Ogden, no tickets necessary (801-392-6935 or www.ogden4arts.org)

"EVE 2012," Dec. 29-31, times vary, multiple artistic performances and events at multiple locations, Salt Lake City, (www.eveslc.com)

To find more holiday arts events not listed here, the Deseret News suggests visiting nowplayingutah.com, arttix.org, smithstix.com, university websites, city websites or community boards.

Email: hbowler@desnews.com