(Orem, Utah) -- Even though Robinne Booth had never seen “The Happy Elf” before SCERA Center for the Arts asked her to direct the musical, she knew that with a musical score by Harry Connick, Jr., it was bound to be good.
“And I was right,” she says. “The music is jazzy and upbeat with catchy tunes you will keep playing over in your head. This is an exceptionally entertaining show with lots of surprises and is absolutely ideal for the holidays.”
“The Happy Elf” will premiere Dec. 2 at 7:30 p.m. continue Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays through Dec. 17. Reserved-seat tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for children ages 3-11 and seniors 65 and older. Tickets are available through www.scera.org, by calling 801-225-ARTS, in person at the main office at SCERA Center from 10am-6pm weekdays and Saturdays from 12noono-tpm, or at the door 30 minutes prior to each performance.
“If you want something to get you into the holiday spirit and experience a night where nothing is impossible, this show is just the tickets,” Booth adds. “It is both magical and musical.”
The story centers on Eubie, the happiest elf at the North Pole. He really wants to be part of Santa’s sleigh team, but his boss, who hates that Eubie is happy all the time, assigns him to the naughty or nice department. Eubie discovers that the town of Bluesville is full of people on the naughty list. Not a single person makes the nice list. So, he decides to use his elfish magic and embark on a musical mission to the morose village. His goal is to bring holiday cheer and happiness to the children of Bluesville and accomplish it in just one day. He puts a special focus on children Molly and Curtis, believing if he can make them happy, he can make everyone happy.
The musical addresses ideas of overcoming adversity, the nature of friendship, the power of positivity and the value of believing in yourself.
“We are the first theater in the western region to get rights to ‘The Happy Elf,’” says Adam J. Robertson, SCERA’s President and CEO. “It’s charming, funny and heartfelt, and I suspect it is destined to become a family holiday classic.”
Starring as the happy elf is Duncan Johnson. Female elf Gilda, Eubie’s love interest, is played by Madelyn Brannelly. Other major players are Jake Hart as Hamm, Eubie’s best friend, and Laura Randall as Molly and Seth Sherman is Curtis. A cast of 30 include Bluesville-ians, elves and elfettes.
Assisting Booth are set designer Shawn Mortensen; costume designer Deborah Bowman; stage manager Melissa Gerber; choreographer Chantelle Wells; and music director Kelsey Mariner.
“The set is colorful and reminiscent of the old Claymation television specials like ‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.’ Shawn has done a clever job with the set,” says Booth. “We get taken to the North Pole, and we even get Santa and Mrs. Claus involved.
“And of course, everything ends well.”
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