Each year, the knowledgeable staff at Stanton’s chooses select titles to promote to you, our valued customers. We listen to thousands of new issues from scores of publishers and composers to present you with the very best in new music for your ensembles. In our new Stanton’s Spotlight feature, we will put a special focus on one piece or resource that we particularly enjoy, and tell you how it can serve you and your students.
by Andy Beck and Brian Fisher
Recommended by Rachel Steele and Jen Sper
If you are looking for a new Christmas musical for your middle-to-upper level elementary students this year, look no further than A Christmas Line! We love Andy Beck’s spoof on Marvin Hamlish‘s hit 1970’s musical “A Chorus Line!”
All of your students will play auditionees who want a part in the North Pole’s annual musical. Everyone performs in the opening number, after which your chorus members are “cut” and move to the risers to accompany our finalists. These lucky folks include Seymour, a snowman from a showbiz family; Randy, little known reindeer; Cameron (boy or girl), just a regular kid; and Cocoa, Cinnamon, and Nog, three elves with attitude! A Stage Manager teaches and leads a dance audition, and Mrs. Claus makes a successful last-second plea to audition herself, adding to the fun.
Just like in the original, the part of the director (Santa) is an off-stage character that we only hear and never see, so it’s a perfect opportunity to feature a favorite teacher, principal, local celebrity or even Santa Claus himself!
A Christmas Line might be the production for you if you are looking:
- to feature 3rd-6th graders in your musical.
- for a musical with minimal set (just requires a stage), costumes (cute hats would do the trick), and props (the only things you need are audition numbers, resumes, and headshots for the lead performers).
- to teach a unit about Marvin Hamlisch and/or Broadway Musicals.
- to feature a small cast of speaking parts but a large chorus.
- to have a great time with well-written songs and adorable dialogue.
About the Authors:
Rachel Steele has been working in the choral department at Stanton’s since 2013. She previously taught middle school and high school band and choir for 13 years, and holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in music education from The Ohio State University. Currently a member of the Heisey Wind Ensemble and a musician at Epiphany Lutheran Church (Pickerington, OH), Rachel also enjoys reading, sewing, baking and the Pittsburgh Steelers!
A former middle school and high school choral director, Jen Sper holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baldwin Wallace College Conservatory of Music. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.