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Show Palace Christmas show seasoned with vintage flavor

Just in time for the holiday season, the Show Palace Dinner Theatre is opening a brand new show, The Frosty Follies, created especially for the theater's audiences.

It was written by Show Palace artistic director Matthew McGee, choreographer Tyler Fish (Cosmo in Singin' in the Rain) and new resident musical director Michael Ursua, who is also part of the Disney Cruise Line creative team and has written several shows for them.

"It's going to be a much different Christmas show from what we've had before," said Tom Hansen, the theatre's award-winning scenic and lighting designer.

"We have live music, and we're creating 'snow' on the stage," Hansen said. There's a big Santa Claus and a sleigh, too.

"This show has a little more of a Broadway feel" than more recent holiday shows, he said. "It should be fun."

The musical replicates popular television Christmas specials from the 1950s and '60s, with classic carols, big production numbers and new songs created by Ursua, according to Susan Haldeman, the company manager and co-star of the show.

In the show, Mr. and Mrs. Kris Kringle (Phillip Wayne Butts in his Show Palace debut and Ms. Haldeman, Domina in Funny/Forum and Vera Charles in Mame) are struggling to save the Christmas spirit in an increasingly cynical world.

Joined by a troupe of red hat ladies, a U.S. Senator (Sara DelBeato, Smokey Joe's Cafe), a harried television producer and a group of magical elves, they have just 48 hours to save the season.

Along the way, there are appearances by Lou, a Bad Santa (James Kidd, Show Palace debut); Bruce, a flamboyant Santa (Zack Fowler, Victor/Victoria); Mime Santa (Todd S. Mummert, Chicago); Elvis Santa (Olin Davidson, Show Palace debut); and Stripper Santa (Andi Sperduti, Kathy in Singin' in the Rain).

Featured performers include 9-year-old Matthew Romeo (South Pacific) and 10-year-old P.J. DiGaetano (Show Palace Christmas).

The 19-member cast also includes Show Palace veterans Troy LaFon, Yurief Rodriguez, Erin Romero, Aaron Wooten, Eric Jon Mahlum, Lana Grube, Rachel Brinker and Stefani Wells and newcomer Pamela Mc­Kenna.

Ursua directs the three-piece combo that will accompany the show.

If you go

What: The Frosty Follies

Where: Show Palace Dinner Theatre, 16128 U.S. 19, Hudson.

When: Nov. 27-Dec. 25. Shows at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and some Thursdays (doors open at 6 p.m. for cash bar and included buffet); 3 p.m. Sundays (doors open at 1 p.m.); and 1:15 p.m. most Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays (doors open at 11:30 a.m.).

Tickets: Dinner and show, $46; show only, $34.95; ages 12 and younger, $28.45 and $23.45; all plus tax and tip. Call (727) 863-7949 in west Pasco; toll-free elsewhere at 1-888-655-7469.

Show Palace Christmas show seasoned with vintage flavor 11/20/08 [Last modified: Thursday, November 20, 2008 6:18pm]
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