pick of the week: They are the ultimate feel-good concerts — the annual winter shows of the Giving Voice Chorus, made up of people facing Alzheimer's. Because singing involves a different part of the brain, many Alzheimer's patients who struggle to remember a family member's name can easily recall complicated song lyrics. "This gives them a chance to remember who they were before the diagnosis," said Mary Lenard, who cofounded the group with Marge Ostroushko. The singers enthusiastically belt out everything from folk songs to rock 'n' roll classics. The 50-member St. Paul chorus presents its concert at 1 p.m. Sunday at the Minnesota History Center. The Minneapolis chorus, 100 voices strong, performs at 1 p.m. Dec. 17 at Olson Middle School in Bloomington. Tickets are $12; free for ages 12 and under. Call 612-321-0100 (that's the MacPhail Center, which donates rehearsal space) or go to givingvoicechorus.org.
Cheat sheet: This is the 40th anniversary of the release of "Rocky." While reminiscing, here are some tidbits to punch up the conversation.
• A plan to redesign the staircase at the Philadelphia Museum of Art was met with outrage from fans, who still show up to re-create the movie's iconic scene.
• Sylvester Stallone's first draft ended with Rocky throwing the title fight instead of battling to the end.
• When Rocky's robe turned out to be the wrong size, instead of waiting for the wardrobe staff to alter it, Stallone ad-libbed a line griping about the bad fit.
Day by day: Saturday is Dewey Decimal System Day, held annually on the birthday of Melvil Dewey, creator of the system for classifying library books. If you celebrate, remember to do so in a whisper.
recommended reading: You snooze, you win. The University of St. Thomas is encouraging students to sleep more, and it's improving their performance in the classroom. Details in Wednesday's Variety.
JEFF STRICKLER • firstname.lastname@example.org