BWW Review: A SPECTACULAR CHRISTMAS SHOW Opens at Musical Theatre Heritage in Kansas City
Dear Santa, for Christmas please bring me another ticket to Musical Theater Heritage's Christmas show, A SPECTACULAR CHRISTMAS SHOW, what a marvelous way to get into the holiday season. As one theater-goer said, "if this doesn't get you in the Christmas spirit I don't know what will". A SPECTACULAR CHRISTMAS SHOW opened Saturday, December 7 at the Musical Theater Heritage Theater located in Crown Center in Kansas City.
One of Kansas City's finest actors Ashley Pankow makes her directorial debut with A SPECTACULAR CHRISTMAS SHOW, proving to Kansas City she is not only fabulous on the stage but behind the scenes as well. Her duties as the director included working on the mash-ups, arrangements, and the often humorous choreography. If this is her directing debut I can't wait to see what she brings to the stage as she gains more experience.
The program is not all traditional holiday music but incorporates dynamic holiday arrangements by Pentatonic and Straight No Chaser. Act one of A SPECTACULAR CHRISTMAS SHOW keeps in line with the mission and tradition of Musical Theater Heritage, featuring holiday music from Musical Theater. Featuring songs such as "Pinecones & Holly Berries" with "It's Beginning to Look Like Christmas" from Meridith Willson's Broadway musical HERE'S LOVE, or "Seasons of Love" from RENT. In between songs members of the cast come to the front of the stage reading letters to Santa, most of which garner large laughs from the audience. The first act ends with "White Christmas".
Act two brings in more of the traditional music, some with a delightfully humorous twist. Opening with "12 Days of Christmas" and continuing with classics such as "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year", "Silent Night", and "Peace on Earth" with "Little Drummer Boy". If you are not in the holiday spirit by then the rendition of "Joy to the World" featuring Shelby Floyd puts an exclamation point on A SPECTACULAR CHRISTMAS SHOW.
Joining Floyd on stage are Keshana Cook, Nora Hennessy, Timothy Michael Houston, Mason Kelso, Noah Lindquist, Robert Vardiman, and the incomparable Mandy Morris. Each of the cast members has fabulous voices, but the performances of Floyd, Morris, and Houston along with the energy they bring to the stage is bound to plaster a smile on your face through the final curtain.
Give yourself, your friends, and family a true gift filled with the Christmas spirit by seeing A SPECTACULAR CHRISMAS SHOW which runs through December 22. To purchase tickets online go to www.musicaltheaterheritage.com.
Photos by Tim Scott