Here’s a little something to start kindling the holiday spirit: A chance to win a pair of tickets to The Washington Ballet’s production of the The Nutcracker! Below is an official description of the show. And this KFDC review of a past performance has more details.
This celebrated production has become DC’s perennial holiday favorite! Set in historic Georgetown with historical figures and whimsical touches. This sumptuous production showcases the grandeur of The Washington Ballet’s international roster of dancers and majestic Tchaikovsky score. Replete with swirling snowflakes, cherry blossoms and historic characters including George Washington as the Nutcracker and King George III as the menacing Rat King! Join us again with family and friends or start a new holiday tradition with your loved ones.
The Nutcracker is running at the Warner Theatre December 3-27. Tickets prices are $30-120, and you can also look for a deal on select seats here. Or you can try to win them!
Giveaway: For a chance to win a pair of tickets to a performance of The Nutcracker, simply leave a comment below telling me your favorite holiday activity in the DC area. Performance options for the winner are any date Wednesday – Friday, December 3-12. To be eligible to win, you must like KidFriendly DC on Facebook and subscribe to the blog (see sign-up to the left). The giveaway will run through this Sunday, and a winner will be drawn at random and announced shortly thereafter. Good luck!
Disclosure: I received complimentary tickets to The Nutcracker in exchange for this post, however, I only promote programs, activities, and products that I truly believe in and/or think would appeal to KFDC readers.
In the spirit of the giving season, here’s yet another giveaway! This time you have a chance to win a Family 4-Pack of tickets to see Septime Weber’s ‘The Nutcracker’ at the historic Warner Theatre. We’ve seen the Washington Ballet’s version of the holiday favorite several times over the years, and it truly is a fantastic production. You can read a KFDC review of a past performance, and this is the official description of the show:
On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of his highly-acclaimed production, Septime Webre is planning some special surprises for his celebrated all-American Nutcracker. Set in 1882 Georgetown, this gorgeous production showcases the grandeur of The Washington Ballet’s international roster of dancers and majesty of Tchaikovsky’s music. Replete with swirling snowflakes, cherry blossoms and historical characters, including George Washington as the heroic nutcracker, TWB’s The Nutcracker has become a tradition for generations of family and friends to celebrate the holidays.
The Nutcracker will be on stage at Warner Theatre December 4 through December 28. Tickets start at $32, and you purchase them online and view the full performance schedule here. (KFDC tip: You can also check for a discount on select seats here). Or you can try to win them in the giveaway below.
Giveaway: For a chance to win a Family 4-Pack of tickets to Septime Weber’s ‘The Nutcracker’ simply leave a comment below telling me the best tip you got from KidFriendly DC — an activity, event, etc. — this past year. To be eligible, you must also like KidFriendly DC on Facebook and subscribe to the blog (sign up is on the top left sidebar). This giveaway will run TODAY ONLY, December 4, and a winner will be drawn at random and notified tonight. The voucher for tickets must be redeemed by tomorrow, December 5, and the winner will have a choice of any evening performance Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday through December 18.
Disclosure: I am receiving complimentary tickets to ‘The Nutcracker’ to run this giveaway, but any opinions expressed here are entirely my own.
From April 16 – 27, The Washington Ballet is bringing the magic of Peter Pan to the Kennedy Center stage, and you can win a pair of tickets to see it!
Here’s the official description of the show:
Take a high-flying adventure to Neverland with the The Washington Ballet’s NEW Production of Septime Webre’s dazzling Peter Pan. A swashbuckling coming of age tale that pits Peter and the Lost Boys against Captain Hook and his outrageous band of pirates, this whimsical adventure is told through vibrant dance. Peter Pan is a story about growing up that never seems to grow old.
There will be both matinee and evening performances, and tickets prices range from $25 – $125.
Giveaway: For a chance to win a pair of tickets to see Peter Pan, simply leave a comment below. To be eligible, you must “like” KidFriendly DC on Facebook. This giveaway will run through noon tomorrow, and a winner will be picked from a random drawing. Good luck!
Enjoying last weekend's superb weather at the Capitol Reflecting Pool, post-Botanic Garden visit.
Holiday activities dominate this weekend round-up, but there are a few non-seasonal recommendations for all the Scrooge types, too. See a family-friendly film about Andy Warhol, visit Santa in his workshop, jam to folk music for children, sing along to holiday songs. That’s just a small sample of all there is to do; read on for the rest. Happy Weekend!
‘Tis the Season – The holiday season is in full swing, and DC is chock full of fun ways to celebrate it. A few special events are mentioned below, and this post listing DC’s best has even more recommendations. Think holiday train displays; festivities at the Botanic Garden, and at the National Harbor; light shows; a boat parade; and even more.
Holidays on Stage – Enjoy the ultimate holiday classic The Nutcracker performed by the Washington Ballet at Warner Theatre or catch a tot-friendly version at The Puppet Co. Join the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future as they lead Scrooge on A Christmas Carol journey at Ford’s Theatre. Get details on these live shows and others at local theaters this season in this post about holiday entertainment.
Santa on the Ellipse – The National Christmas Tree was illuminated by the First Family last night, so festivities at President’s Park have officially begun. See the tree, a model train zipping around it, the Yule Log, and holiday displays representing all 50 states. But the biggest thrill for kids, by far, will be Santa’s Workshop, which is an actual little cottage on the Ellipse grounds, just down the path from the tree. There, guests can check out St. Nick’s “operations,” complete with a Naughty & Nice meter, letters to Santa stacked up on desks and posted on walls, sketches of toys, and a conveyor belt loaded with presents to be distributed to kids around the world. This is all there for kids to peep as they wait in line to meet Santa himself and sit on his lap for a photo op. It’s open this Saturday and Sunday from 12:30-4:30pm then again from 5:30-9:30pm. Beware that the line can get long — I’ve heard of waits up to 40 minutes — so plan accordingly. Read about our experience there last year.
Bethesda Winter Wonderland – Celebrate the holiday season in downtown Bethesda with a variety of free performances, a live ice sculpting presentation in Bethesda’s Veterans Park, and a visit from Santa Claus. Festivities kick off this evening with a concert at 8pm, and continue tomorrow with ice sculptures in Veterans Park (located at the corner of Woodmont & Norfolk Avenues) from 1-2pm, then a student concert and visit from Santa from 2-4pm. Admission is free.
Scribble, Art, Pop! – Kids can explore art through filmat The National Gallery of Art’s monthly film program. This weekend they’ll present a series of animated shorts that celebrate the qualities that make artists. Guests can get a glimpse into the life and art of Andy Warhol in the fun and gentle film Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists: Andy Warhol, a family-friendly biography of Warhol and an introduction to pop art, along with a few other animated shorts about art, all of the kid-friendly variety. Sessions are at 10:30am on Saturday and 11:30am on Sunday in the East Building Auditorium. The program is free, and seating is offered on a first-come, first-seated basis. Recommended for ages 4 and up.
Renwick Holiday Festival – Celebrate the holiday season in presidential fashion at the Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery. Go on a scavenger hunt through the exhibit Something of Splendor: Decorative Arts from the White House, where you might spot Grace Coolidge, Dolly Madison, and Teddy Roosevelt; enjoy a family day filled with music, crafts, and activities inspired by the exhibition. Create your own presidential china patterns, make holiday ornaments, and warm up with some hot apple cider. The event takes place on Saturday from 11am – 2pm. Admission is free.
Folk Jam for Kids – Boston roots musician and family entertainer Alastair Moock will perform an all–ages concert at Jammin’ Java on Saturday at 10:30am. The concert celebrates the release of Moock’s new CD entitled “These Are My Friends,” which just won a 2011 NAPPA Gold Award. The show is part of the venue’s ongoing family concert series. Tickets are $10 and available online or at the box office.
DIY Holiday Cards – Kids can exercise their creativity and get into the holiday spirit at a special Holiday Card Workshop hosted by the National Postal Museum on Saturday, from 12 – 3:30pm. Artist Thalia Doukas will provide stamp-centric inspiration and mailable ornaments that guests can use as they create two holiday cards. Be sure to make time before or after to explore the museum, which is full of interesting exhibits, many of them interactive.
Holidays Around the World: Kwanzaa – This holiday season, the National Children’s Museum Launch Zone is celebrating winter holidays around the world. On Saturday from 11am – 4pm, drop in to learn all about Kwanzaa, a holiday focusing on the values of African culture. Kids can make family tree place mats and mishumaa, traditional Kwanzaa candles. Admission is free. The Museum is located at National Harbor, so you can combine it with a visit to the Gaylord National Resort for Christmas on the Potomac.
Wolf Trap Holiday Sing-A-Long – Belt out the season’s most popular tunes at Wolf Trap’s annual gathering on Sunday at 4pm. Along with the opportunity to sing Christmas Carols and Hannukah songs along with choir and vocal groups from the metropolitan Washington area, you can enjoy a performance by the United States Marine Band. While admission to the event if free, Wolf Trap will be participating in Toys for Tots by collecting new, unwrapped toys at the entrance to the Filene Center before the Sing-A-Long. Donations are strictly voluntary and not a requirement. Parking is also free, though limited, so plan on arriving early.
Annual Holiday Sing at the Atlas – The annual free Holiday Concert at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, in collaboration with Capital City Symphony the Congressional Chorus, and the American Youth Chorus, is an H Street holiday tradition. Shows take place on Sunday at 4pm & 7pm. I checked the status of tickets on the website, and while it’s sold out, a note says to “Please come the day of the performance to join the waiting list. In years past, everybody has got in.” Hey, it’s worth a try. And if you don’t get in, you can grab a bite at one of the many eateries along the corridor or head up the street to Union Station to check out the Holiday Train Show.
Tis’ the season for some wonderful productions at many of our local theatres. From several versions of The Nutcracker ballet (including some on strings) to Ebenezer Scrooge at Ford’s Theatre to seasonal favorites scaled down for little ones, there’s something on the stage for everyone. And not only do these productions enhance the holiday spirit; they’re entertaining indoors activities on nippy autumn and winter days.
Here’s a rundown of holiday shows (ordered by opening date, with most descriptions pulled straight from the websites) coming to theatres as early as this weekend. All tickets are on sale now.
The Happy Elf
Montgomery College, in collaboration with Adventure Theater
Dates: 11/12 – 11/19
Tickets: $20, $15/Seniors & Students
Based on the song of the same name by Harry Connick, Jr. and book by Lauren Gunderson and Andrew Fishman, with music and lyrics by Harry Connick, Jr. and directed by Tony Award-winner John Rando, The Happy Elf is an exciting new addition to both the College Performing Arts Series and Adventure Theatre’s 59th seasons. This new musical follows Eubie, a North Pole elf who always wears a smile, when he decides to bring Christmas joy to the sad town of Bluesville, which has fallen into a state of permanent blues. A coveted spot on Santa’s sleigh team awaits Eubie if he can fix Bluesville. Don’t miss this heart-warming new holiday musical that captures the joy of the season.
Rudolph the Rednose Reindeer
Dates: 11/19 – 1/2
Experience the timeless tale of Rudolph and friends in a whole new way – LIVE! The beloved stop-motion classic soars from the TV screen to the stage in this live-action world premiere. Featuring everyone’s favorite characters: Hermey the Elf, Sam the Snowman, the Misfit Toys, the Abominable Snow Monster, Yukon Cornelius, Santa, and (of course) Rudolph! You won’t want to miss this wonderful holiday tradition that speaks to the misfit in all of us. All ages.
A Christmas Carol
Dates: 11/20 – 1/2
Tickets: $30 – $60
Join the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future as they lead the miserly Ebenezer Scrooge on a journey of transformation and redemption. Michael Baron returns to direct his original staging that captures the magic and joy of Dickens’s classic. Acclaimed Washington stage actor Edward Gero returns to play Scrooge in the production The Washington Post hailed as “musically high-spirited” and “infectiously jolly.” Recommended for ages 5 and up.
The Little Red Gingerbread Man
Dates: 11/23-24 -10:15am & 11am, 11/26 – 11am.
Tickets: 11/23-24 $3 – $6, 11/26 $9/children, $10/adults
In this best of all fairy-tale worlds, the Barefoot Puppets tell the rollicking story of what happens when two great classics get mixed with a twist. You’ll never guess what happens when an inquisitive redhead goes in search of a runaway cookie. Chase scenes! Hilarity! The Big Bad Wolf! It’s a perfect pre-Thanksgiving family activity. Friday is a special family performance — each child will receive a gingerbread cookie to decorate and take home. Recommended for ages 2-8.
The Joffrey Ballet – The Nutcracker
The Kennedy Center
Tickets: $45 – $150
The Joffrey Ballet dancers perform Robert Joffrey’s “dazzling” (The Chicago Sun-Times) version of Tchaikovsky’s family classic, featuring charming Victorian scenery and costumes.
Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells!
Dates: 11/24 – 1/11
Tickets: $10 – $22
It’s holiday time in Room One and that means drama! Tattletale May keeps picking on Junie B., and things get even worse when Junie B. draws May’s name for Secret Santa. She hatches a plan to give May a lump of coal, while getting an awesome Squeeze-A-Burp for herself. Will Junie B. have a last-minute change of heart and show her true holiday spirit? Just like its heroine, the show has laughs, verve and energy to spare! Recommended for ages 4 and up.
The Puppet Co. Main Stage
Dates: 11/26 – 12/31
Tchaikovsky’s musical adaptation of the E. T. A.Hoffman story is brought to life by the magic of The Puppet Co. “The Nutcracker” is the festive story of Clara-Marie’s adventures with her favorite toy. The larger-than-life-size costume characters and marionettes delight Clara-Marie, and the audience, on her magical journey through the “Land of the Sugar Plum Fairy.” Originally performed live with the Arlington Symphony, this production is full of, as the Washington Post put it “clever costuming and delightful surprises.”
Septime Webre’s “The Nutcracker” will delight audiences at THEARC on November 27 & 28. Word has it that these Washington Ballet productions at the Anacostia theatre are intended to be kid-friendly for antsy theatre-goers, with a scaled-down set and shorter performances. Four show times are available.
The Puppet Co. Tiny Tots
Dates: 11/27 – 12/29
This marionette version of the holiday classic is geared toward the smallest of audience members. Tiny Tots shows are designed for theater patrons ages 0-4. They are shorter, the lights stay on, the doors stay open, and the show is set up on the floor.
Seasons of Light
Dates: Mon thru Fri 11/30 – 12/22
Tickets: $3 – $6
This seasonal favorite calls in the warmth of many holidays filled with light in our fun-filled interactive celebration. Explore the history and customs of Devali, Ramadan, Sankta Lucia, Chanukah, Kwanzaa, Las Posadas, Christmas, and a First Nations tradition of the Winter Solstice. This show sells out fast — book your tickets early! Recommended for ages 4-12.
A Christmas Carol (Saturday Morning at National)
An interactive adventure presents Charles Dickens’ ever-green holiday tale of Tiny Tim Crachit and the hard-hearted Ebenezer Scrooge. The old miser’s redemption from ill-humor and grumpy greed is brought vividly to life by the delightfully charming, entrancing and whimsical story-teller, Chris Davis. Show times are 9:30am and 11am. Tickets are free and distributed a half hour prior to performances on a first-come, first-served basis. Every person must be standing in line to receive a ticket.
Christmas Dreams from The Nutcracker
Snowflakes and Sugar Plum Sweets are in the air as the Virgina Ballet Company and School present selections from their magical, glittering Nutcracker. Familiar music, lively dances, lovely costumes and charming characters from Tchaikovsky’s classic confection bring us elegant and amusing holiday cheer. Show times are 9:30am and 11am. Tickets are free and distributed a half hour prior to performances on a first-come, first-served basis. Every person must be standing in line to receive a ticket.