Friday’s Art Notes

BY Molly Finnegan  December 24, 2010 at 12:17 PM EDT

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Christmas lights adorn a house in the Bothasig suburb of Cape Town late on December 23, 2010. Residents of Cape Town neighborhoods are competing to have the most attractive Christmas decorations. Photo by Rodger Bosch/ AFP/ Getty Images

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It’s a merry Christmas at the Charles Dickens Museum in London, via BBC.

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Can we have a new Christmas play, please? New Yorkers appreciate seasonal alternatives to the classics, via The New York Times’ ArtsBeat.

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The Atlantic offers two helpful holiday primers: the secrets of what makes a great Christmas pop song, and what you can learn about Christmas from contemporary television dramas.

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Having a panic attack over last-minute shopping for the picky aesthete in your life? We offer these conversations with critics about the best under-appreciated books, movies and music to you in your eleventh hour of need.