It’s that time of year! Letters have been written to Santa, the tree is up and decorated, and our thoughts now turn to…..musicals of course! Christmas is a great time of year to celebrate the best of the seasonal shows. Whether you are full of Christmas spirit or, perhaps, mumbling a little ‘Bah humbug’ to yourself (surely not?!), we’re sure you’ll enjoy exploring our pick of the best festive shows.
First up is the festive family musical, White Christmas. Based on the 1954 film of the same name, this show is guaranteed to make you feel all fuzzy and warm. When singers Bob Wallace and Phil Davis get home from the Second World War, they get straight back to work. Joined by singing sisters Betty and Judy Haynes, the foursome create a Christmas stage show at an inn owned by their former commander, General Waverley, in rural Vermont. General Waverley is in deep financial trouble and his future depends on the success of the show. Needless to say, the singers save the day and a little romance is sprinkled in along the way. With classic numbers such as the iconic, “White Christmas”, “Sisters”, “Blue Skies” and “The Best Things Happen While You’re Dancing”, Irving Berlin’s music will get you in the Christmas mood!
A Christmas Carol
If you’re based in New York City, you may have taken to a trip to Madison Square Gardens to watch Lynn Ahrens and Alan Menken’s A Christmas Carol, which was produced annually from 1994 to 2003. Or perhaps you watched NBC’s adaptation with Kelsey Grammar in the lead role of the miserly Ebeneezer Scrooge. If you’re completely unaware of this musical version of Charles Dickens’ classic novella, then I’m sure you know the story. Who can forget Tiny Tim’s heartfelt Christmas wish …”God bless us, every one!” There have been many stage, film and radio adaptations but Alan Menken’s magic brings this show a little extra sparkle.
While you’re exploring this show, why not check out the latest adaptation currently playing on Broadway until January 5. Written by Jack Thorne (the playwright behind Harry Potter and the Cursed Child), this new play weaves 12 well-known Christmas carols into the festive storytelling.
Elf the Musical
“It’s the story of…Buddy the Elf!” Well, this is a fun one! With a book by the Tony Award winners Bob Martin (The Drowsy Chaperone) and Thomas Meehan (Hairspray, The Producers, Annie), this musical adaptation of the 2003 film is full of Christmas hilarity and “Sparklejollytwinklejingley”. After learning that he is not really an elf, Buddy gains Santa’s blessing to travel to New York City and find his real father. His journey kicks off a mission to bring the true meaning of Christmas back into New York City. Elf the Musical has become a firm festive favorite in theatres across the world and is currently playing a supersized arena tour around the UK. Plus, there’s a very popular junior version which allows every young performer to discover their inner elf!
Also, if you’re looking for a fun song to perform that will showcase your voice and comic timing, check out the brilliant “Never Fall in Love With an Elf”.
A Christmas Story: The Musical
It’s time to go back to 1940s Indiana and the story of a little boy called Ralphie. All he wants for Christmas is an official Red Ryder Range Model Carbine Action BB Gun. This zany, heartwarming musical first launched on Broadway in 2012 scooping three Tony Award nominations for Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical, and Best Original Score.
The show is adapted from Jean Shepherd’s amusing radio stories about growing up in Indiana during the 1930s and 40s and incorporates a cute, perky score and delightfully quirky characters. Did you catch the 2017 live broadcast of the show with Matthew Broderick, Jane Krakowzki, and Maya Rudolph?
So what other shows would you include in our top Christmas picks? Which shows jingle your bells and put you in the festive mood?!
From all of us at StageAgent, have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!