“Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful…”
Admit it: as you read that, you were singing along.
It’s now officially winter, snowy and wonderful (well, sometimes), and that means that it’s time for the most musical of seasons. All those reindeer with red noses that need to be sung about, all those Christmas carols, all those bells jingling all the way: December is a time for song.
We at Two River Theater certainly agree. We love December not only for the snow and the sparkly decorations and the plentiful cookies that start showing up in our office kitchen (and eaten - everyone knows you need an extra layer of insulation against cold winters!), but because it’s time for our holiday musical. And this year, we have one that is utterly delightful.
The Wind in the Willows is a classic, beloved by generations now. The stories of Rat and his friend Mole, and the animals of their community by a river, are as heart-warming as a mug of cocoa on a cold day. The writing team of Mindi Dickstein (book), Sarah Schlesinger (lyrics), and Mike Reid (music) have brought those stories to life, telling the story of lonely Mole’s search for a home for Christmas and the friends along the way, and added songs that are beautiful and fun – although, warning, they will get stuck in your head for days, (and you MIGHT get weird looks on the subway when you realize that you were accidentally singing Mrs. Otter’s song about being born to fish out loud instead of in your head. Not that that’s happened to me or anything.)
We’ve got all the things that makes a show delightful – a great cast, some of the coolest costumes around, and a set that is rather magical (look closely at the decorations around the proscenium – some of them are made out of such humble materials as raffle tickets and potato chip bags!). We love watching the show, but what we love watching even more is the kids watching the show; seeing their faces light up as their favorite character appears, or hearing them laugh at a joke, or watching as they realize it’s magically snowing on the audience - well, it’s a Christmas gift to us, every time.
But don't take our word for it - come see the show. And just as a little teaser (or shall we say stocking stuffer?), here's a preview video:
And from all of us here at Two River Theater to all of you, may your cars be full of vroom, your brambleberries be sweet, your poems be beautiful, and your homes be warm and full of friends.* Happy Holidays.
*this will all make more sense after you've seen the show.