From the moment the curtain rose until the very end of the show, I had a smile from ear to ear as I was thoroughly entertained "Elf The Musical," back on Broadway just in time for the holidays! This feel good musical was the perfect escape from all of life's woes and made me really excited for the holiday season to kick into full swing!
"Elf the Musical" tells the tale of "Buddy," a young orphan who, upon learning he's human, leaves the North Pole and ventures to New York City to find his birth father and discover his true identity. What happens after that is one hilarious moment after the next. Helping bring this show to life was its stellar cast consisting of "Avenue Q's" Jordan Gelber as "Buddy," Tony Award winner Beth Leavel as "Emily," the wife of "Walter," played by Tony Nominee Marc Jacoby, Drama Desk nominee Leslie Kritzer as "Jovie," the love interest of "Buddy," Valerie Wright as "Deb," "Walter's" secretary, Mitchell Sink as "Michael," the son of "Emily" and "Walter," and "Seinfeld's" Michael Knight as "Santa."
I saw Jordan Gelber in "Avenue Q" and knew he had great comedic talent, but "Elf The Musical" puts Jordan and his genius comedy skills front and center, where he belongs! He triumphed as "Buddy," making me laugh throughout the whole show. Jordan Gelber is a leading man, comedy or otherwise, and I hope this show gives him more leading roles. I've been a fan of Beth Leavel's since seeing her in Broadway's "The Drowsy Chaperone." I adored her tonight in "Elf The Musical." She brought a lot of joy to that stage, especially when she sang. I only wish her role warranted a solo number. Beth's voice is one that definitely needs to be spotlighted alone. I finally had the chance to see Marc Jacoby on stage, which was wonderful. He's a very dynamic actor. Back on Broadway, where she belongs, was the talented Leslie Kritzer, whose vocal power is unreal! She bestowed that angelic voice upon the audience beautifully in her Act 2 solo number "Never Fall In Love." One supporting actress who really caught my eye was Valerie Wright. She had a gorgeous singing voice and good comedic timing. Stealing the laughs everytime he was on stage was the one and only Wayne Knight. Best known as "Newman" on NBC's "Seinfeld," (though I adored him on TV Land's "Hot In Cleveland") Wayne did a fantastic job as "Santa." Comedy is Wayne's strength and I'm thrilled to have had the chance to see his talent live on stage. Capturing the hearts of everyone in the theatre and shining real bright was Mitchell Sink, in his Broadway debut. Mitchell has great comedic chops, good vocal quality, and a stage presence that puts the focus on him. I can't wait to see where Mitchell goes from here, but wherever that is, I hope to be there cheering him on. I'm definitely a fan!
If you are looking for a fun show, great family entertainment, a place to forget your worries, then I would highly recommend going to "Elf The Musical." It's obvious this cast loves what they do up on that stage and that energy spreads throughout the whole theatre. Come in from the cold and enjoy "Elf The Musical" at the Al Hirscheld Theatre (302 West 45th Street, between 8th & 9th Avenue) in NYC through January 6, 2013! Click here for tickets!