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by Kaitlin Ahern November 27, 2013

Related: 2012 holiday shows in nyc, best holiday shows for kids in nyc, nyc family shows in december 2012, christmas shows in nyc, holiday theater in manhattan,

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UPDATED NOVEMBER 2013: Our roundup of kid-friendly NYC holiday shows for the 2013 season includes Broadway and Off-Broadway must-sees, from classic performances such as the Radio City Christmas Spectacular and The Nutcracker to new musicals like A Christmas Story and Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Get all the details on these family-friendly performances here.


Radio City Christmas Spectacular Parade of Wooden SoldiersRadio City Christmas Spectacular

This year’s Spectacular celebrates 86 years of the Radio City Rockettes in New York. As always, the show features dazzling dance numbers (the ever-popular kick line) and beloved favorites (The Nutcracker scene), along with a more recent addition:"Snow," featuring dazzling special effects.

Where: Radio City Music Hall, 1260 Sixth Ave. (between 50th and 51st streets)

When: Nov. 8 - Dec. 30; see website for show times

Running Time: 90 minutes

Ages: All ages; tots younger than 2 do not need a ticket but must sit on a parent or guardian’s lap

Tickets: $39-$129.50; 866-858-0007 or radiocitychristmas.com


Angelina Ballerina the Very Merry Holiday MusicalAngelina Ballerina: The Very Merry Holiday Musical

Angelina, the dance-loving little mouse from the popular children’s book series, works together with her friends to save Mouseland’s holiday pageant from disaster. In the process (and in the midst of lots of singing and dancing), the characters learn that the holidays are not about what you receive, but the holiday cheer you share.

Where: Vital Theatre Company’s McGinn/Cazale Theatre, 2162 Broadway (at 76th Street), 4th Floor, Upper West Side

When: Nov. 16 - Jan. 5; select Saturdays and Sundays at 3:30pm

Running Time: Approximately 1 hour

Ages: Best for kids ages 3-10

Tickets: $39.50-$59.50; 212-579-0528 or vitaltheatre.org

FYI: Based on the Angelina Ballerina books created by Katharine Holabird and illustrated by Helen Craig as well as the CG-animated series Angelina Ballerina: The Next Steps on PBS KIDS, this musical returns for a second year.


George Balanchine's The NutcrackerGeorge Balanchine’s The Nutcracker

The New York City Ballet takes center stage in this classic show set to Tschaikovsky’s famous score. In a holiday dreamland, little Marie looks on as her beloved Nutcracker battles the Mouse King and transforms into a prince, then brings her to meet the Sugarplum Fairy in the Land of Sweets. The show ends as the children soar off in a sleigh pulled by flying reindeer.

Where: David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center, Broadway (at 64th Street)

When: Nov. 29 - Jan. 4; see the website for show times

Running Time: 2 hours

Ages: All ages

Tickets: $29-$225; 212-870-5570 or nycballet.com

FYI: VIP “Sweet Seats” include premium seating, souvenir book, and a 15-percent discount at the gift shop. Plus, for every two VIP tickets purchased, you’ll receive a voucher good for one complimentary keepsake photo with a character from the show.


Scrooge in A Christmas CarolA Christmas Carol

Of all the holiday shows starring grumpy old Ebenezer Scrooge, this is the big one. The Off-Broadway musical, presented by Literally Alive children’s theater company, translates the classic Dickens tale into a live production featuring all the usual suspects. Even if you know the story by heart (which surely most of us do), this lively adaptation is still sure to jump-start your holiday spirit.

Where: Players Theatre, 115 MacDougal St., Greenwich Village

When: Dec.1-30, Thursday-Sunday; see the website for show times

Running Time: Approximately 1 hour (does not include pre-show workshop)

Ages: Recommended for ages 3 and older

Tickets: $25-$45; 212-352-3101 or scroogeinthevillage.com

FYI: An interactive arts workshop (included in ticket price) precedes the 11am show on Saturdays and Sundays.


A Christmas Story musicalA Christmas Story, The Musical

A Christmas Story is directed by Tony Award-winner John Rando and choreographed by Warren Carlyle. This new musical based on the classic 1983 movie, which itself was based on stories by legendary radio humorist Jean Shepherd, features funny and heartfelt songs by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul and a faithful yet inventive book by Joseph Robinette. Dan Lauria will once again lead the cast of the Tony Award-nominated musical. He will be joined by three other returning cast members from the Broadway production: John Bolton as The Old Man, Erin Dilly as Mother and Caroline O'Connor as Miss Shields. Ralphie will be played by Jake Lukas, who has appeared on Broadway in "Newsies." The show made its debut last Christmas on Broadway.

Where: The Theater at Madison Square Garden

When: Dec. 11-29

Running Time: About 2 hours

Ages: Children younger than 4 are not permitted in the theater.

Tickets: $40-$165; 877-250-2929 or achristmasstorythemusical.com or theateratmsg.com/achristmasstory

FYI: You can download a free educational study guide, featuring trivia, BB gun safety quiz, crossword puzzle, and word search about the show.


Whoopi Goldberg puppetYes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus

This original musical is based on 8-year-old Virginia O’Hanlan’s 1897 letter to the editor of The Sun newspaper, in which she asks whether Santa Claus is real, and the editor’s response, which assured Virginia that Santa Claus does indeed exist, “as certainly as love and devotion and generosity exist.” This marionette version of the tale features Whoopi Goldberg’s voice and puppet likeness as the Librarian. It also features the voices of Tony Award-winners Brian Stokes Mitchell and Victoria Clark.

Where: Macy’s Puppet Theatre, Macy’s Herald Square, 151 W. 34th St., 8th Floor (elevator at 35th Street and Broadway)

When: Nov. 29–Dec. 24, weekends only; shows start at 9:30am and run throughout the day

Running Time: 30 minutes

Ages: All ages

Tickets: $5, available at the box office only

FYI: $2.50 per person for groups of 10 or more; call 212-494-1917 Monday-Friday 1-4pm or visit puppetworks.org


elizabeth mitchellElizabeth Mitchell and You Are My Flower Holiday Concert

Returning favorite Elizabeth Mitchell, along with specials guests such as Natalie Merchant, blend longtime audience favorites with holiday songs from Mitchell's stunning new album The Sounding Joy.

Where: Symphony Space, Upper West Side

When: Dec. 14 at 11am

Running Time: About an hour

Ages: All ages

Tickets: $15-$25; 212-864-5400 or symphonyspace.org

nytb nutcrackerKeith Michael's Nutcracker

New York Theatre Ballet returns for a third year with it's production of Keith Michael's The Nutcracker, an enchanting holiday ballet. From clockwork imps to a luminous owl that flies above the audience, mice dressed in polka dots and dancers dancing with huge chopsticks, this re-imagined timeless classic is bursting with energy and excitement. This holiday ballet, performed to Tchaikovsky's beloved score, is set in Art Nouveau style circa 1907 with innovative choreography by long-time NYTB choreographer, Keith Michael; set design by Gillian Bradshaw-Smith; and costumes by Resident Costume Designer of the Metropolitan Opera, Sylvia Nolan.

Where: Florence Gould Hall, Upper East Side

When: Dec. 14-15 and Dec. 22 at 11am, 1pm, and 3:30pm

Running Time: About an hour

Ages: All ages

Tickets: $40; $35 for children ages 12 and younger; 212-355-6160 or nytb.org

yo gabba gabba holiday showA Very Awesome Yo Gabba Gabba! Live! Holiday Show

Listening and dancing to music is awesome! Join DJ Lance and all your favorite friends from Yo Gabba Gabba! for their first-ever holiday show, featuring dance numbers that will make you "razzle dazzle" and special effects that will transform the stage into a glistening winter wonderland. Get excited about giving back as part of the proceeds from every ticket will be donated to the Toys for Tots charity. A Very Awesome Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE! Holiday Show presented by Citi will rock preschoolers and parents alike while giving something back this holiday season.

Where: Beacon Theatre, Upper West Side

When: Dec. 20 at 5pm; Dec. 21 at 11am, 2pm, and 5pm; Dec. 22 at 11am and 2pm

Running Time: 80 minutes, including a 20-minute intermission

Ages: All ages

Tickets: $46-$76; 212-465-6500 or yogabbagabbalive.com

FYI: Part of the proceeds from every ticket sold will benefit Toys for Tots, the nonprofit organization authorized by the U.S. Marine Corps to provide fundraising and other necessary support for the annual Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program.

Kwanzaa Celebration at the ApolloKwanzaa Celebration: Regeneration Night

The Apollo Theater celebrates Kwanzaa (begins Dec. 26) with its annual pull-out-all-the-stops evening of dance and music honoring the principles of the holiday: family, community, and culture. Hosted by radio personality Imhotep Gary Byrd, the show features Abdel Salaam’s Forces of Nature Dance Theatre and other special guests.

Where: The Apollo Theatre, 253 W. 125th St., Harlem

When: Dec. 27 at 7:30pm

Running Time: Approximately 2 hours

Ages: All ages

Tickets: $18; 800-745-3000. Families/groups of five or more: $13 per person; 212-531-5355 or apollotheater.org


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