Holiday Guide 2012-Elf the Musical

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Last night my husband and I had the privilege to travel to Tampa’s David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts to see Elf the Musical.

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Elf 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 toy-making 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.

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ELFChristmastown – Matt Kopec (Buddy) and the cast of “Elf The Musical.” Photo by Joan Marcus

We had great seats in the mezzanine level of this beautiful theater. It has been years since we have been here and this was our first trip since it became the Straz Center. The volunteer ushers were friendly and helpful, and even warned me that Act 1 was 80 minutes long, in case I needed to visit the restroom…which I did. I do have 1 complaint about the theater; The show was scheduled to start at 7:30pm but it started at 7:41pm. I’ve been in theater most of my life and the curtain always goes up on time!

The show itself was a delightful re-telling of the Elf story. It was not exactly the story movie goers are familiar with, there are some missing scenes and some new ones. The book and music went together seamlessly. The sets and scenery were well executed as well. The cast did a great job bringing the story to life in a way that was great for both kids and adults. There were plenty of “adult” jokes as well as a lot of pop culture references to make this tale appropriate for all ages.

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BuddyandSanta – Matt Kopec (Buddy) and Gordon Gray (Santa) in “Elf The Musical.” Photo by Joan Marcus

If you are in the Tampa Bay area, get your tickets now, the show is in town til the 25th. Next stop is Ft Meyers for the 27th-December 2nd and then onto St Paul, Minnesota for December 5-30. If Elf the Musical isn’t coming to your area, check your local theaters to see what they are offering this Christmas season. Attending live theater events is a great family activity and gift cards for tickets make great Christmas presents!

Elf The Musical on Tour has partnered with Metropolitan Ministries for a holiday food drive. Save $20 off select seats for the Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday performances of Elf The Musical with the donation of a non-perishable food item, now through show time at the Straz Center ticket office. This offer is valid for seats in price levels 1 and 2 and is subject to availability. One discounted ticket per donated food item, limit of four discounted tickets. Not applicable to prior sales. Cannot be combined with any other offer.

Disclosure: We received 2 free tickets to the show in exchange for this review. All opinons are 100% mine.


    • cindy says

      Crystal, It used to be the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, from 1997-2009 when it was renamed for David Straz, Jr who is gave a VERY generous donation.

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