The Radio City Christmas Spectacular
The annual holiday show is chock-full of glamour, extravagance, and the Rockettes' singular talents.
The show also provides a too-rare glimpse of those dazzlingly leggy dancers known as the Radio City Rockettes. These lovely ladies get to show off their particular kick-line skills in the very first number, the smile-inducing "Sleighride," and they're rarely off the stage for too long afterwards.
The dancers show off their unparalleled precision in a clever, tap-oriented arrangement of "The Twelve Days of Christmas," riding in a Gray Line double-decker bus in the enchanting "New York at Christmas" sequence (complete with a pair of dazzling ice skaters), kicking up a storm as three shelves full of raffish rag dolls in the inventive "Santa's Workshop," displaying almost military precision in the brilliant "Parade of the Wooden Soldiers," or lighting up the stage in the figuratively brilliant "Let Christmas Shine."
While the Rockettes are the show's star attraction, this extravaganza is also chock-a-block with a full array of talent. It's almost impossible not to feel like a giddy five-year-old while watching the charming "Nutcracker" sequence. (I love those dancing bears!) The smile-inducing "Here Comes Santa Claus" number remains another highlight.
And the show's grand finale: "The Living Nativity," a re-telling of Jesus Christ's birth, is full of beautiful pageantry (including those famed live camel and sheep) and inspiring music, but is brief enough not to overwhelm the proceedings.
The show benefits greatly from the clever use of a giant state-of-the-art L.E.D. screen on stage that projects fantastic images -- from larger-than-life ornaments to twinkling Christmas trees -- that are truly awe-inspiring. (The remarkable 3-D ride with Santa as he and the reindeer come into New York City is a particular treat.)