There is a push to make the day after Christmas a new event called “Show Day,” in the way that the day after Thanksgiving is “Black Friday” — except instead of shopping, people are encouraged to see live entertainment.
There’s certainly plenty to see. All Broadway shows are offering performances on “Show Day,” and a good number have added extra performances either the Monday before Christmas or the Sunday afterward, or both. Twenty-one are planning to offer performances the evening of Christmas Day. (Scroll to the bottom of this post for the complete Broadway Christmas week schedule.)
Of course, a show on Christmas Day – or on Show Day – is not necessarily the same thing as a holiday show, of which there are plenty. Not all of them are happening on Christmas Day; several have already ended their runs this year. One, the 17th annual reading of Times Square Angel written by and starring Charles Busch at Theater for the New City, is happening Monday, December 14th, 2015.
Below are a selection of holiday shows that vary in tone and intended audience.
Radio City Christmas Spectacular – Radio City Music Hall, through January 3, 2016
This 90-minute Christmas show, an annual event since 1933, features an original score, and more than 1,300 costumes, worn by some 140 performers, including the Rockettes, the 36-strong dance troupe famous for their synchronized kicks. Tickets start at $50 (although there are some deals online) and run as high as several hundred dollars apiece.
George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker – New York City Ballet, through January 3, 2016
The version of Tschaikovsky’s score that launched a holiday tradition. Tickets range from $75 to $265.
Hard Nut, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Dec 12 – 20
A modern(ist), humorous version of the Nutcracker, with choreography by Mark Morris. Tickets start at $25, and go up to $115.
Hip Hop Nutcracker, NJPAC (Newark), December 19.
A touring company that is only performing once in the tri-state area this month, with tickets from $49 to $79
A Child’s Christmas in Wales, Irish Rep, through January 3, 2016
The peculiar habits of people during the season of feasting and merriment as seen through the eyes of a little boy
Elf, The Theater at Madison Square Garden, December 9 – 27, 2015.
A stage adaptation of the movie about a human taken in by Santa who travels to New York to find his real family.
A Christmas Story, Papermill Playhouse, through January 3, 2016
The Pasek and Paul musical adapted from the 1983 movie: Ralphie wants only one thing for Christmas: An Official Red Ryder® Carbine-Action 200-shot Range Model Air Rifle. (My review of the Broadway production three years ago.) This production is in Milburn, New Jersey.
A Christmas Carol(s)
It’s not really possible to keep on top of all the various stage versions of the Dicken’s story featuring Tiny Tim and Scrooge.
At the Players Theater in the Village for the seventh year, now through December 30.
At Theater for A New City, December 17-20
At Theatre Row by Mod Company, December 16 – December 23
At Queens Theatre by Titan Theatre Company now through December 20.
Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some) – Wild Project, December 14-16
A production of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol goes awry when the actors mutiny and decide to create their own show
Santasia – A Holiday Comedy, St. Luke’s Theater, through December 23
Yuletide snark and sentiment, sketch comedy and claymation movies
The Greatest Pirate Holiday Spectacularrr! (Theatre 54), Dec 24-Jan 3
‘A Christmas Carol’ with a pirate twist and audience suggestions.
A Very Jewish Christmas – Gotham Comedy Club December 24
An evening of comedy with Jewish comedians Marion Grodin, Jon Fisch, Gregg Rogell (7:30 show), Gary Vider (9:30 show), Sherry Davey and Jon Laster/
NOT For Children
At The Laurie Beechman Theater:
- Holiday High Jinkx – Dec 16-20
RuPaul’s Drag Race winner Jinkx Monsoon & her piano man Major Scales return with new holiday show.
2. Your Christmas is Terrible, Dec 17-20
RuPaul’s Drag Race star Alaska and sidekick Handsome Jeremy return with Seasons Greetings.
NYC’s Favorite Grinch serves up her 18th annual non-denominational holiday comedy feast.
Nutcracker Rouge, Minetta Lane Theater through January 17, 2016
The Burlesque version of the Nutcracker Suite.
Broadway Theater Schedule on Christmas Week
The schedule below, which comes from the Broadway League, could change without notice. Please check the website or box office of any specific show.
Crossed out dates= canceled performance (sometimes just blank)
Bold faced dates = added performance
Italic dates = different curtain time
Show Title Mon. Dec. 21 Tues Dec. 22 Wed. Dec. 23 Thurs. Dec. 24 Fri. Dec. 25 Sat. Dec. 26 Sun. Dec. 27 Aladdin DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm, 6:30pm Allegiance DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm American in Paris, An DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm, 7pm Beautiful: The Carole King Musical DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm Book of Mormon, The 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm Chicago 8pm 8pm 8pm 8pm 8pm 2:30pm, 8pm 3:00pm, 7:30pm China Doll DARK 7pm 7pm 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm Color Purple, The 7pm 7pm 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm Curious Incident 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30 Dames at Sea DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm Fiddler on the Roof DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30 Finding Neverland DARK 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7:30pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm Fun Home 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm Gentleman’s Guide… DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm Gin Game, The 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm Hamilton 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm Hand to God 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 7:30pm Illusionists, The: Witness the Impossible DARK 7pm 7pm 7pm 7pm 11am, 3pm, 8pm 11am, 3pm, 7:30pm Jersey Boys 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm King and I, The DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm, 7pm King Charles III 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm Kinky Boots DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm Les Misérables DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 1:30pm, 7:30pm Lion King, The DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm, 6:30pm Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games 7:30pm 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7:30pm 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm Matilda DARK 7pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm Misery DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm Noises Off 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm On Your Feet! 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm Phantom of the Opera, The 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm School of Rock 7:30pm 7:30 2pm, 7:30pm 7:30pm 7:30 2pm, 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm Something Rotten! DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm Spring Awakening 7pm 7pm 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 7:30pm Sylvia DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm Thérèse Raquin 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm View from the Bridge, A DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm Wicked DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
Keep in mind there is much more theater Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway. Want to see a show on Christmas Day? Check out The Golden Bride.