Nibbles and Sips: ‘Christmas Thrills And Chills For Every Theatregoer’

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nutcracker

One of the best ways I know of to get excited about the Christmas season is to get thyself (and thy family) to the theatre where you can watch dancers soar in Septime Webre’s The Nutcracker performed by The Washington Ballet, sing your heart out to the National Symphony Orchestra’s performance of Handel’s Messiah at the The Kennedy Center, or be transported by the age-old charms of A Christmas Carol. Whether you’re a traditionalist or modernist, there’s something for every taste, and plenty of holiday spirit for the kids too and plus a whole lot of ICE! to pretend we’re at the North Pole.

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At Signature Theatre it’s zany adult fare with a new spin on the beloved seasonal revue, Holiday Follies.  Directed by Walter Ware III with musical direction by the inimitable Howard Breitbart, it’s an audience song choice evening featuring four fabulous singers,Gannon O’Brien, Stephen Gregory Smith, Delores King Williams, and Bayla Whitten in a cabaret set list that changes with each performance. For tickets and information visit www.Signature-Theatre.org or call the box office at (703) 820-9771.

Two-story ice slide.
Two-story ice slide.

North Pole enthusiasts will enjoy thrills and chills at this year’s ICE! – now at the Gaylord National Resort. The fun starts at the door of this glamorous resort when you lay eyes on the 60-foot tall glass tree glowing with over 2 million lights and gaze at the nightly indoor snowfall and musical “dancing” fountains. There’s fun for the whole family at the “Christmas on the Potomac” celebration where Frosty the Snowman is the star attraction. For info visit www.ChristmasOnThePotomac.com.

60-foot tall glass tree with 2 million lights.
60-foot tall glass tree with 2 million lights.

Carved from more than 2 million pounds of brightly colored ice sculptures and kept at a crisp nine degrees, you’ll stroll through life-size scenes of Frosty coming to life, marching through the Town Square, taking a train to the North Pole and Santa coming to the rescue to make “melted Frosty” whole again. Kids and grownups will want a turn on the two-story ice slide before checking out the interactive “Frostbite Factory,” where the Chinese artisans show off their master ice carving skills.

Afterwards head to the Atrium where little ones can hop aboard the miniature Peeps & Company Potomac Express Train or join DreamWorks’ Gingy from Shrek to decorate a gingerbread house to take home. Along the way play The Great Reindeer Roundup scavenger hunt throughout the hotel’s indoor gardens.

Potomac Express Train
Potomac Express Train

To learn about the many other holiday plans at the resort and to make reservations for the Brunch with Santa at Old Hickory Steakhouse, a DreamWorks’ Madagascar Crack’ A Lackin’ Cook-in Character Breakfast or buffet Dinner, a Yule log pastry making class, or a wine and cheese pairing class with the Old Hickory’s Maitre d’Fromage. Visit www.GaylordNationalTickets.com or call (301) 965-4000.

Peter Boyer (Scrooge)-Tracey Stephens (Charity Collector)
Peter Boyer (Scrooge)-Tracey Stephens (Charity Collector)

At MetroStage the Great White Way is celebrated in A Broadway Christmas Carol, a spoof of the classic tale featuring the usual suspects – – Marley, Scrooge, Mrs. Fezziwig, The Cratchits and Tiny Tim. Set to familiar Broadway blockbusters this madcap Christmas special is performed by three phenomenal singer actors, Peter Boyer, Michael Sharp and Tracey Stephens plus alternating pianists, Howard Breitbart and William Knowles..

Peter Boyer (Scrooge)-Tracey Stephens (Want)-Michael Sharp (Ignorance). Photo by Colin Hovde.
Peter Boyer (Scrooge)-Tracey Stephens (Want)-Michael Sharp (Ignorance). Photo by Colin Hovde.

Lyricist Kathy Feininger has concocted all the belly laughs you can handle in this riotous revue that draws its musical chops from all your fave shows like Oklahoma, Guys and Dolls, Les Miserables, Phantom of the Opera, The Wiz and many, many more. More than five-dozen tunes and a whirlwind of wacky costume changes jam-pack this hilarious parody directed and choreographed by Michael Sharp. For tickets and information visit www.MetroStage.org or call the box office at (703) 548-9044.

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For the traditionalist The Little Theatre of Alexandria presents its annual heartwarming classic, A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens’ classic tale of transformation and redemption. Set against the backdrop of Victorian England, the show has gorgeous costumes, ghastly ghosts and charming children.

Scrooge (Mike Baker, Jr.) Photo by Veronica Bruno.
Scrooge (Mike Baker, Jr.) Photo by Veronica Bruno.

Rachael Hubbard adapts and directs this picture perfect Christmas postcard for a family friendly show that reminds us all of the true meaning of the season. If it’s a Currier & Ives Christmas you hunger for, this is the show for you. For tickets and information visit www.TheLittleTheatre.com or call the box office at (703) 683-5778.

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Jordan Wright
Jordan Wright is an accomplished writer on food, spirits, travel, and theatre. Her clients include the tony Georgetowner and hip sister publication the Downtowner, the Washington Examiner and San Francisco Examiner, as well as LocalKicks.com, DC Metro Magazine, Washington Life Magazine, Washingtonian Magazine, MDTheatreGuide.com, The Alexandria Times, Hartkeisonline.com, and now DCMetroTheaterArts. Her articles feature restaurant openings, food and wine events, food-oriented film reviews, farmer’s markets, food trends, restaurant reviews, food memories, new food products, hotels, spas, resorts and interviews with the country’s leading chefs – from Jose Andres and Top Chef’s Carla Hall, to CakeLove’s Warren Brown and Top Chef’s Spike Mendelsohn. She has also interviewed famed chef and TV star, Anthony Bourdain, Eric Ripert, cookbook author Joan Nathan, and director Robert Kenner for an in-depth article about his film Food, Inc. Photographs by Wright accompany many of her articles and NBCNews.com has picked up and used several of her stories. Jordan Wright hails from three generations of show business. Her grandmother, Betty Morton, was a Ziegfield Follies girl; her step-grandmother Corinne Griffith, a noted author and silent screen star wrote Hail to the Redskins; her father, Georgie Price, an entertainer and founder of The Lamb’s Club in New York, as well as a CBS radio show host, songwriter and vaudevillian; her sister, Penny Larsen Vine, a theatre critic both on radio and in print for Variety, a former longtime member of the Outer Critics Circle, and a lead performer in countless national touring companies; one brother, Peter Price, appeared in leading roles in over 16 major motion pictures for MGM; while her other brother, Marshall Price performed at Carnegie Hall. Niece, Stephanie Vine, was the final Annie in the original production of Annie on Broadway, and niece, Liz Larsen, has received two Tony nominations and a Helen Hayes award for lead actress in Sunday in the Park with George. Wright sang with Columbia Records in New York and Barclay Records in France. In the sports world her grandfather was the original owner and founder of the Washington Redskins football team. Wright has traveled throughout four continents and currently resides in Old Town Alexandria.