By Joe Johnson
Ensemble Stage presents A Banner Elk Christmas 2 on December 6, 20, and 21 @ 7 pm and on December 8 and 22 @ 2 pm at the Historic Banner Elk School Hahn Auditorium (185 Azalea Circle SE) in Banner Elk, NC.
This family friendly annual holiday variety show is patterned after the Andy Williams and Bing Crosby television Christmas specials from the 60s and 70s. A Banner Elk Christmas 2 features over 40 songs, including traditional, contemporary, secular and non-secular songs, dancing and storytelling over the course of about an hour and five minutes.
“We keep the same format, but the songs always change,” said Gary Smith, Artistic Director at Ensemble Stage, “The choreography is usually a little bit different, especially with songs we haven’t done. Even though it’s called Banner Elk Christmas 2, it is not a repeat of last year’s Banner Elk Christmas. The only thing that is a repeat is the concept of the show itself; everything else is new and fun! It isn’t just a bunch of singing; there is a lot of choreography, singing, dancing, and costume changes. It’s nothing like people just standing up on stage and singing songs.”
A Banner Elk Christmas 2 presents a high level of professional talent with Show Host Michael Helms and Musical Director Dana Davis and highlights multiple special effects created by Lighting Designer John Marty, Choreographer Stacey Trivett, Costume Designer Jennifer Helms and gifted Carolers and Dancers Derek Gagnier, Sidney Ginn, Jana Greer, Jarrett Koski, Sarah McGuire, and Julia Urh. A kid’s chorus will also be singing a song as well as featuring on three other songs during the performance.
This weekend’s performances of A Banner Elk Christmas 2 will be the anchors on each end of Banner Elk’s Small Town Christmas festivities. The first performance of A Banner Elk Christmas 2 will be Friday night, December 6 at 7 p.m. after the lighting of the tree; since there are many other activities going on in Banner Elk on Saturday, Ensemble Stage won’t host another performance of the holiday show until Sunday, December 8, at 2 p.m. Ensemble Stage will then host the last three performances of the Holiday show on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, December 20 to 22.
Make sure to get your tickets early; seating for Ensemble Stage is entirely reserved, so you will get a better choice of seats the earlier you purchase tickets! Tickets for A Banner Elk Christmas 2 are $22 plus tax for adults and $12 plus tax for kids 16 and under. Order your tickets online via Ensemblestage.com, by phone at 828- 414-1844, or at the box office.