The Radio City Christmas Spectacular!

 by Kelly, Guest Services Manager

With Thanksgiving one week away, it’s about that time – the time to get into the Holiday spirit.  I started early this year with a trip to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular.

The Radio City Christmas Spectacular is one of the most-watched live shows in the United States, with over two million people attending every year.  The show features the Radio City Rockettes, who have been high-kicking their way into America’s hearts since their first performance at Radio City Music Hall in 1932.  Known for their precision dancing and the perfect uniformity of their stunning kicklines, the Radio City Rockettes are a New York City staple.

Now, I confess…I’ve always harbored a secret desire to be a Rockette.  Sparkly costumes, perky smiles, tap dancing…I’m all about it.  However, I’ve resigned myself to watching from afar, considering I’m just too short (did you know that each Rockette must be between 5’6” and 5’ 10 ½” tall?)…and I haven’t been able to kick that high since high school cheerleading camp…and goodness knows that was a long time ago.  Even though I will never be able to join their kickline, I get a thrill every time I see the Rockettes perform.

This year’s Radio City Christmas Spectacular features a little of the old and a little of the new.  Audience members can expect to see their favorite tried-and-true numbers, such as the Rockettes’ version of “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” a live recreation of the first Christmas in “The Living Nativity,” and the amazing “Parade of the Wooden Soldiers.”  The wooden soldier number is really amazing to behold – the discipline and skill that it takes to create the visual effects of this number, especially the slow-motion trust fall where each Rockette falls back into the arms of the dancer behind her, keeping the line upright and intact until the last soldier falls to the ground, are truly remarkable.  One of my favorite numbers that I’ve seen in years past is “New York at Christmas,” which features the entire cast of singers and dancers as the Rockettes tour Manhattan aboard a Gray Line double decker sightseeing bus.  As the Rockettes board the double decker bus and the action continues onstage, the sights of Manhattan whiz by behind the stage on the world’s largest flying LED screen, making you feel like you’re taking the Gray Line tour with the Rockettes!

This year’s revamped Christmas Spectacular features a few new numbers in addition to the favorites of years past.  A new storyline featuring a harried mother and her young child frantically shopping for a special Christmas present at the mall encounter Santa, who gives them a present of his own – a trip to the North Pole to play “Santa’s Video Game.”  In the game, the Humbugs have struck and have kidnapped all of the toys from Santa’s workshop.  The mother and daughter team must defeat the Humbugs to save Christmas.  As the mother and daughter battle the Humbugs, the Rockettes join in as the players being controlled in the game…all in front of the giant LED screen featuring brand new 3D graphics that have to be seen to be believed!  Ultimately, the mother and daughter team triumph, and they realize that the greatest Christmas gift of all is time spent together.  I’m not usually a huge fan of 3D, but even I’ll admit that I thought this number was fun and inventive, and I really enjoyed it.

The Radio City Christmas Spectacular is a blast of Holiday cheer, and the perfect way to celebrate the season.  For me, no Holiday season would be complete without a trip to see the Rockettes, Santa, and Gus the camel (who makes a cameo in “The Living Nativity”) in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular.  Performances run through January 2nd with 4 shows daily.  Visit our website at for tickets, give us a call at 212-302-4019, or you can email me personally at for tickets to join in the Holiday cheer.  Have a safe and happy Holiday season, and as the Rockettes sing – “Let Christmas Shine!”



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Filed under Broadway Review, NYC Icons, Out on the Town

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