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There’s something for everyone at the Lucille Lortel Theater this December and there are two more weeks of shows featured in the theater’s TINSEL: A GLOBAL HOLIDAY FESTIVAL.

In these unpredictable times, everyone is doing his and her best to stay safe as we gather, to get together for valid and uplifting reasons and to think of others when we choose to do so.

This festival has achieved this and I applaud the productions.

Everyone in the theater must be fully vaccinated and wearing a mask 100% of the time they are inside the theater. The audience is within a safe distance from the stage and all the performers. There is comfortable ventilation – I found myself putting my coat over my shoulders a few times, gratefully so.

I have seen two of these brilliant shows, Jared Grimes’s Christmas in the Lab and Canciones de Navidad, in the past week and was glad I attended (both were one night only). While the theater wasn’t full, every person present was clearly excited to be there, kept safe, respectful distances and was able to truly enjoy the musical celebrations for the holidays.

Here’s a short guide for the remaining shows and a photo from tonight’s CANCIONES DE NAVIDAD, Jaime Lozano’s touching and masterful concert of classic and new latin songs for the holidays, featuring “La Famiglia,” his non-blood artistic troupe of talented colleagues. The stage set is the same for all the shows with plenty of tinsel and glowing lights of many colors.

In the headlining show, EVERETT BRADLEY’S HOLIDELIC!, Bradley plays the role of Papadelic, Funk’s Father Christmas, an amalgamation of George Clinton and Santa Claus, featuring holiday-themed funk songs written by Bradley and brought to life by an array of top shelf noise makers.

HOLIDELIC Dates and Times:

  • December 17, 18, 22, 23, 29, 30 – 9PM
  • December 19, 26 – 2PM
  • December 31 – 10:30PM

On December 17 at 7PM, composer/vocalist Ilene Reid’s THE SOUNDS AROUND THE HOUSE offers a real life Chrismukkah miracle of jazz, comedy, joy, misery, Jewish guilt, and New York snark. Join her and her rocking band as she rings in the most wonderful – and trying – time of the year.

On December 16 at 7PM, witness BRINDA GUHA’S INVOCATION (A HOLIDAY SUMMONING.  The south asian diasporic arts encompass an intersection of ancestral knowledge with presence of mind and the power to future a world that centers the right to have peace in our hearts. A collection of séances to call healing spirits forward as we mindfully re-emerge into a new normal, arts worker Brinda Guha brings together various local creators who deeply converge with south asian artistry to create a moment of serenity before ultimately building a necessary and steadfast bastion of hope.

CUMBÉ: FAMILY CELEBRATIONS THROUGHOUT THE AFRICAN DIASPORA takes place on December 19 at 7PM. Presented by Center for African Diaspora Dance (Cumbé), come for an evening of music and dance celebrating holiday traditions throughout the African diaspora. The root of the word Cumbé means party or celebration, join in the celebration!

On December 20 at 7PM, join host and Broadway Star, Telly Leung (Aladdin, Glee) for TOSSING TINSEL WITH TELLY, as he and some very special friends spill the tea (and maybe a cocktail or two) about their favorite holiday and show biz memories, play a few games, and sing a few tunes. Guests will include Ann Harada (Avenue Q, Shmigadoon), Michael Maliakel (Aladdin), Jaygee Macapugay (School of Rock, Here Lies Love), and Kennedy Kanagawa (Gold Mountain). Darren Lee (The King And I, Chicago) directs this entirely Asian American Pacific Islander company. Music direction by Amanda Morton on the piano (KPOP), with Arei Sekiguchi (Curvy Window) on the drums. Guest produced by Christine Toy Johnson (Come from Away).

On December 27 and 28 at 7PM, RONNY DUTRA’S RÉVEILLON BRANCO – ‘A Brazilian New Year’s Eve Celebration‘ will take the audience on a journey through Rio’s most famous NYE party, in Copacabana Beach. It showcases the crazy/unusual traditions and superstitions the moment the clock ticks midnight, telling the story with a lot of Brazilian music and dance.”

And the finale, LATRICE ROYALE’S WHY IT GOTTA BE WHITE CHRISTMAS?! takes place on December 27, 28 – 9PM and December 29 – 7PM, celebrating our LGBTQ sisters and brothers. In this campy, yet heartfelt look at holiday traditions, international drag superstar Latrice Royale (RuPaul’s Drag Race) asks the question, “Why It Gotta Be WHITE Christmas?!?” Joined by her husband and music director, Christopher Hamblin on piano, along with a small gaggle of gay dancers, Royale shares her unique perspective on life, family, and holiday traditions. Join us to illuminate our differences, celebrate our commonalities, and ring in the New Year with a kiki!

Pick your flavor and ethnic preferences or pick several ~ all feature high levels of artistry and entertainment, plus hopeful, honest vibes and cheery audiences.

 

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