Radio City Music Hall Is Decked Out for the Christmas Spectacular
By Ellis Nassour
The Showplace of the Nation, Radio City Music Hall, is ringing in the season with the 85th Edition of its Christmas Spectacular, running through December 30. The always eagerly-anticipated holiday show, estimated to be seen by 72 million people over the years, is one of New York’s most popular attractions, right up there with quintessential sites such as the Statue of Liberty, Empire State and Chrysler Buildings, Rockefeller Center and the U.N.
As always, the two standout stars are the world-famous Rockettes, the glamorous 36-strong precision dance team, and Santa Claus. To further captivate audiences, the production extends beyond the stage to transform the Hall into a winter wonderland. You’ll get swept away as soon as you enter the Art Deco lobby, where there hangs a jaw-dropping, 35′ mobile tree made up of 6,000 Swarovski crystals.
This year’s fast-paced, 90-minute edition has the world’s largest flying indoor LED screen, new routines and surprises, songs and carols, razzle-dazzle costumes, 3-D and cutting edge digital projection alongside beloved numbers that have been a tradition since 1933: "The Parade of the Wooden Soldiers," the high-energy tap-infused "The 12 Days of Christmas," the famed rag doll number and, of course, the Living Nativity.
It’s a very airborne show, with Santa on an awesome journey soaring over Manhattan in his reindeer-drawn sleigh through a blizzard to the whimsical world of his North Pole workshops. There are blasts of confetti and tons of special effects. In "New York at Christmas," the Rockettes take audiences on a whirlwind Manhattan holiday tour aboard a Gray Line double-decker bus that culminates in a Times Square fireworks display. You’ll visit Central Park as ice skaters take over the frozen lake. The "reason for the season" Living Nativity has been enhanced so that Bethlehem’s starry-night sky envelops the audience.
The Rockettes’ finale, "Let Christmas Shine," literally shines as the dancers, each costumed with over 3,000 Swarovski crystals, assemble as live ornaments to create the world’s largest live Christmas tree, some 20′ high.
Entertainment begins a quarter hour before showtime, when the mighty Wurlitzer organs roll out for a mini-concert of holiday favorites.
Tickets for Radio City Music Hall’s Christmas Spectacular, presented by Chase, are $35 – $119 and available at the Music Hall box office or, with the addition of service fees, online at www.radiocitychristmas.com and ticketmaster.com, or by calling (866) 858-0007.