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Star of wonder with ‘Amahl and the Night Visitors’

“Amahl and the Night Visitors” is a little bit magical, with its tone of wonder and bittersweet music. The opera, originally written for television, tells the story of a little disabled shepherd boy who, in a twist of fate, encounters the Three Kings on their way to give their gifts to the Christ child. It’s a sweet drama, touched with a humor and humanity that captivate children and grown-ups alike and add a grace note to the Christmas season. Nickel City Opera has a six-year tradition of performing this mini-masterpiece at Christmas time. This year’s performances take place at Westminster Presbyterian Church and are timed to coincide with Epiphany, the celebration of the Three Kings and how they followed the star of Bethlehem.

The production includes a small chamber orchestra and chorus, as well as costumes and atmospheric staging. Ian Torres is Amahl, and the opera is directed by Jacqueline Quirk and produced by Wesley Krantz and Valerian Ruminski, the head of Nickel City Opera. It takes place at 7 p.m. Jan. 8, 3 p.m. Jan. 9 and 3 p.m. Jan. 10 at Westminster Presbyterian Church (724 Delaware Ave.). Tickets are $16 for adults, $8 for children. Call 939-3722.

– Mary Kunz Goldman