The Radio City Christmas Spectacular is an annual Christmas show performed at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The lavish holiday show features almost one hundred and fifty dancers, elaborate and extravagant costumes, and remarkable sets. The shows have original musical scores and combine singing and dancing to create a one-of-a-kind Christmas event. The stars of the show are the Radio City Rockettes, a precision dance troupe famous for their immaculate chorus line of high kicks. Since its beginning in 1933, the show has become a holiday staple in New York City and is seen by more than a million viewers every year.
When the show first began, it featured symphonies, dancing, singing, a ballet, a living nativity presentation, and the Rockettes performing the Parade of Wooden Soldiers. The last two, the nativity scene and the Rockettes, remain part of the show to this day. In 1979, the show went from a thirty minute show to ninety minutes and began to incorporate new scenes and acts. In 2007, as a celebration of the 75th anniversary of the show, they formulated a whole new program, with new dances, songs, and scenes. In 2011, the show was updated again to feature a 3DLIVE scene, including fresh musical numbers and the classic Living Nativity scene and the Parade of the Wooden Soldiers. Since its beginning, the show has been performed in over sixty cities nation-wide.
The New York Times describes the 2013 Radio City Christmas Spectacular show as high-tech and modern, featuring bright, glittering snowflakes that float through the air. A one-of-a-kind holiday experience, the stage is transformed into a fabulous winter wonderland. The show this year also features scenes from the Nutcracker, a Rockette dance to the Twelve Days of Christmas, and a new Christmas parable, in which a little girl wants a shooting video game for Christmas. During the story, the child and her mother learn the true meaning of Christmas by gathering around a gaming-console, which features a holiday-themed adventure that the audience must wear 3D glasses to watch. While they incorporate these new modern additions into the show, they also are able to stick to the classics. With the Living Nativity scene, the little town of Bethlehem comes to life as viewers watch the birth of Jesus accompanied by live animals on stage. In addition, they dancers work their usual magic with their ever-popular Parade of the Wooden Soldiers.
This season, the Radio City Christmas Spectacular runs in New York City from November 26 to December 30. In addition to the shows in New York City, there are shows in Atlanta, Georgia from November 7 to November 23, shows in Nashville, Tennessee running from November 16 to December 24, performances put on in West Palm Beach, Florida from November 29 to December 8, and finally, shows given in Tampa, Florida from December 12 to December 29. The shows are consistent in every city in order to satisfy fans with the Christmas show they have come to know and love.