Christmas came alive as the New York Pops, TADA! Youth Theater, New York Theatre Ballet, Judith Clurman’s Essential Voices USA and Tony Award nominee John Bolton (A Christmas Story The Musical, Dames at Sea) brought A Charlie Brown Christmas to life. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the iconic television show. In a special holiday Family Concert, performed at Carnegie Hall on the Perelman Stage, Music Director Steven Reineke combined the talents to bring about a staged concert version of Charles M. Schulz’s television special. The beloved Peanuts characters came to life through original choreography by director/choreographer Liza Gennaro, performed by dancers from New York Theatre Ballet and child actors from TADA! Youth Theater who voiced the characters. The award winning music never sounded more glorious as done by our own New York Pops and sung by Judith Clurman’s Essential Voices USA as the background from the original showed above.
Prior to the presentation of A Charlie Brown Christmas, the whole ensemble performed what was known as the “Christmas Follies.” In order that the children were still in their seats John Bolton had the entire audience stand up and rock out to “Jingle Bell Rock” and rock out they did.
To top off the afternoon, to the delight of the audience Santa and his elf joined in. To see the children’s delight at that was precious. Christmas should always be seen through the eyes of children. Even famed singer Marilyn Maye, knew this was the concert to be at.
The Family Concert, was one of three holiday concerts performed at Carnegie Hall this December by The New York Pops. The New York Pops is one of New York’s greatest gifts and I for one am thankful that they bring music to life in such a thrilling way.