Theater and entertainment is always extra special around the holidays. Some of my favorite holiday productions are just around the corner like The Nutcracker and Tis the Season by Pacific Chorale. A new one has been added to my holiday list as well – ELF the Musical. While holiday productions hold a magical place in my heart, there are a many other shows and performances coming up that remind me how grateful I am to live in Orange County. Odysseo by Cavalia, Mamma Mia, and Sleeping Beauty will all be performed here within the next month. They are an excellent precursor to my holiday lineup. See below for the greatest upcoming Orange County events. See you there!
Upcoming Orange County Events
Odysseo by Cavalia
Dates: November 16 – January 8th
Location: 16720 Laguna Canyon Road, Irvine
Known as the world’s largest touring production, Odysseo marries the equestrian arts, stage arts and high-tech theatrical effects at never-before-seen levels. This larger-than-life show sends hearts racing, but it is also a feast for the eyes that succeeds in delivering the spectacular with soul. Audiences of all ages are rediscovering with emotions the century-old relationship between human and horse. As friends, partners and inseparable performers on stage, 70 horses and 45 artists lead the spectator on a great journey in a world of dreams where, together, they discover some of the planet’s most unforgettable landscapes.
Beyond the impressive technical display and equestrian and acrobatic numbers that are unlike anything ever seen on stage, Odysseo is first and foremost a work that feeds the soul. The poetry flowing from this grand adventure shines a light on a more humane world where human and horse may live in harmony.
Dates: November 22 – November 27th
Location: Segerstrom Center for the Arts
South Coast Plaza, 600 Town Center Dr, Costa Mesa
MAMMA MIA! is the ultimate feel-good show that has audiences coming back again and again to relive the thrill. Now it’s your turn to have the time of your life at this smash-hit musical that combines ABBA’s greatest hits, including “Dancing Queen,” “S.O.S.,” “Super Trouper,” “Take A Chance on Me” and “The Winner Takes It All,” with an enchanting tale of love, laughter and friendship. Whether it’s your first visit or your fourteenth, see the show that has the whole world coming back for more, because every time feels like the first time at MAMMA MIA!
Sleeping Beauty And Her Winter Knight
Dates: December 7 – December 30
Location: Laguna Beach Playhouse
Cozi Zuehlsdorff (“Dolphin Tale”), Joely Fisher (Broadway: Cabaret, “Desperate Housewives”), Barry Pearl (“Grease”) and Vonzell Solomon (American Idol) will star in this interactive musical fairy tale with comedy, magic and pop music sure to delight children of all ages!
Sleeping Beauty and Her Winter Knight is based on the European fairytale where a Princess called Aurora has a curse put on her by an evil fairy Carabosse. By her 18th birthday, Aurora will prick her finger on a spindle and fall asleep for 100 years. The Royal family live under the protection from Silly Billy and Nanny Tickle but Aurora does prick her finger and falls asleep for 100 years. A handsome Prince saves the day by defeating the wicked fairy and giving Aurora a true love kiss.
Festival Ballet Theatre: The Nutcracker
Dates: December 10 – December 24
Location: Irvine Barclay Theatre
Bursting with energy and excitement, Festival Ballet’s enormously popular production charms audiences of all ages. Set to the timeless music of Peter Tchaikovsky, The Nutcracker tells the story of Clara, a young girl who receives the gift of a nutcracker soldier from her mysterious godfather – and then the magical journey begins! Family-friendly and affordable, this full-length, traditional production is choreographed and directed by Festival Ballet Theatre’s Artistic Director Salwa Rizkalla, and features spectacular guest artists, FBT’s professional company dancers, and exceptional young talent.
ELF the Musical
Dates: December 20 – January 1
Location: Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Costa Mesa
ELF THE MUSICAL is the hilarious tale of Buddy, a young orphan child who mistakenly crawls into Santa’s bag of gifts and is transported back to the North Pole. Unaware that he is actually human, Buddy’s enormous size and poor toymaking abilities cause him to face the truth. With Santa’s permission, Buddy embarks on a journey to New York City to find his birth father, discover his true identity, and help New York remember the true meaning of Christmas. This modern day Christmas classic is sure to make everyone embrace their inner ELF.
Tis the Season – Pacific Chorale
Dates: December 20 – December 21
Location: Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Costa Mesa
John Alexander brings the holidays to life in a musical extravaganza featuring the magnificent voices of Pacific Chorale, joined by members of Pacific Symphony Orchestra, angelic children’s voices, and a special guest from the North Pole. It’s one of Orange County’s most beloved traditions! Bring the whole family to meet ours, and let us help set the mood for your Christmas festivities with tidings of comfort and joy!
Please add to the list if you know of other magical events and family-fun activities in Orange County, California.