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December 12, 1996

Comedy

Picking a career in comedy was a no-brainer for Pauly Shore. His mother, Mitzi, owns the Comedy Store in Hollywood, and his father, Sammy, was a top stand-up of his day (he's been at it for more than 40 years now) who has also opened for his son.

But it wasn't until 1990 and the MTV show "Totally Pauly" that the young Shore began cultivating a pop following with his irrelevant and dude-speak style. That toehold allowed Shore to expand his talents into movies and performance albums.

* Who: Pauly Shore.

* When: 7 and 9:30 p.m. Friday.

* Where: The Coach House, 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano.

* Whereabouts: Take Interstate 5 to Camino Capistrano and go left. The Coach House is in the Esplanade Plaza, on the right.

* Wherewithal: $19.50-$21.50.

* Where to call: (714) 496-8930.

*

Country

If you're going to buy just one recording released this year, then Merle Haggard's four-CD box set retrospective, "Down Every Road," is a prime candidate. It makes the case for Haggard as country music's most poetic storyteller, a songwriter whose best work has the timeless quality of great folk music.

Pop fans who think they're singer-songwriter aficionados are missing something big if they haven't reckoned with Hag. His good work isn't done, either. Haggard's other 1996 release, laconically dubbed "1996," finds him in fine form, singing about truckers, hard-pressed working folks and the beleaguered environment.

* Who: Merle Haggard.

* When: 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. With Paula Nelson opening.

* Where: Coach House, 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano.

* Whereabouts: Take Interstate 5 to Camino Capistrano and go left. The Coach House is in the Esplanade Plaza, on the right.

* Wherewithal: $50-$52.

* Where to call: (714) 496-8930.

*

Music

Incorporating vocal soloists and a chorus into a symphony is the most obvious innovation Beethoven created in his Ninth Symphony. The opening measures, in which the main theme emerges from wisps of sounds, is another.

Carl St.Clair will conduct the Pacific Symphony, the Pacific Chorale and a vocal quartet in this, Beethoven's last and vastly influential symphony.

The soloists are soprano Susan von Reichenbach, mezzo Mary Ann McCormick, tenor David Hamilton and baritone Thomas Scurich. The program also includes Brahms' "Nanie" and Toru Takemitsu's "Twill by Twilight."

* What: The Pacific Symphony.

* When: 8 o'clock tonight.

* Where: Orange County Performing Arts Center, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.

* Whereabouts: Take the San Diego (405) Freeway to Bristol Street; exit north. Turn right onto Town Center Drive.

* Wherewithal: $8-$44.

* Where to call: (714) 755-5799.

*

Family Affair

There'll be a whole lot of ho-ho-hoing going on this Saturday in Santa Ana, thanks to the work of hundreds of local Santas. The Winter Holiday Party at the Santa Ana Stadium is expected to attract more than 3,000 youngsters this year.

The event will feature free activities such as face painting and craft stations, plus entertainment, a balloon bounce and a play area blanketed with 10 tons of trucked-in snow. The Jolly One and his elves will be on hand, distributing small toys to all visitors ages 3 to 12 (while supplies last).

* What: Children's Winter Holiday Party.

* When: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday.

* Where: Santa Ana Stadium, 602 W. Flower St.

* Whereabouts: Exit the Santa Ana (5) Freeway at Main Street and go south. Turn right onto Civic Center Drive. The stadium is at Civic Center Drive and Flower Street.

* Wherewithal: Admission free; parking is $1.

* Where to call: (714) 571-4200

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