Category Archives: Holiday Performing Arts Guide

Parent Review: Miracle on 34th Street The Musical

Gobble Up
Some Family Memories this Thanksgiving!

Miracle Poster


Kris Kringle is Alive and Well and in The Hub City…
Catch him while you can!

Special holiday week shows through Sunday November 26th.

Moonlight Broadway has given area families another holiday treat… a chance to bridge generations with its latest production of Meredith Willson’s Miracle on 34th Street – The Musical.  It’s the perfect outing for the entire family during the Thanksgiving holiday week, whether they are coming from out of town or across the street, are young or old.  And this production is particularly charming because, in true Moonlight Musicals fashion, they have included many children into the cast.

In fact, the story line revolves around a child: Susan Walker (enthusiastically played by Abi Mills).  Susan is a little girl who was never allowed to believe in Santa or other things that are not tangible.  It was a well-intentioned strategy by her mother, Doris, to protect Susan from being hurt or disappointed from dreams that may not come true.  Susan’s quest to discover if her friend Kris Kringle really is who he says he is, strikes a chord with the kids in the audience, establishing Susan as a hero: she is the little girl who finds her Santa and whose faith helps inspire all the adults around her to believe in and follow their own dreams.

Santa march

The Thanksgiving Day Parade scene at the first of the show, with the kids and floats is fun, and includes a spirited march as the children at the parade fall in behind Santa, forming a line and marching to, of all things, a Christmas carol!

The music is festive and enjoyable and helps make the musical version more lighthearted than the screenplay versions.  One that everyone in the audience will recognize is a family fave:  “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas”… who knew that one of our favorite carols was born on the stage!

We loved the gentle, kind, yet commanding presence of Kris Kringle, played wonderfully by Mike Morgan.  His warm and playful manner was fun to watch as he interacted with the children on stage, from leading the kids on a holiday march, to answering their questions and requests with compassion and sage advice.  And what our kids enjoyed as well, was seeing how Kris was able to to help the grown-ups believe once again in miracles and in the goodness of people.

Santa and HendrikaA real treasure in this production, was a song performed by Santa and a little Dutch girl, Hendrika (played by Aubrey Giselle).  Santa is approached by the girl’s guardian, who tells Santa that the little girl speaks no English yet, only Dutch, whereby Santa begins a conversation in her language and they sing the little girl’s favorite Christmas carol together, “Bugles.”  It was an enchanting moment for the audience and the pivotal moment when Susan started to believe that the gentleman known as Kris Kringle, could in fact be Santa Claus.

Parent Pointers:

Parents need to be aware that the show does start by showing a tipsy Santa, who was to be in the parade, which gave the real Kris Kringle the chance to take over as Santa in the parade.  And the entire basis of the show centers around the disbelief in Santa Claus:  Susan was never allowed to believe in Santa or other things that are not tangible.  So parents may want to be prepared to answer some similar questions.  However, as the story progresses, Susan was shown that “Faith is believing in something that common sense tells you otherwise” – another teachable moment with out kids.

Preparing for the show:

Miracle on 34th Street has several different productions available on film or video, which would be fun to watch together either before or after seeing the play.  Most of the movies are not the musicals, so especially with older kids, it would be interesting for them to see the difference in a musical format compared to a story or screenplay format and for them to share which they prefer.  In addition to having a Christmas theme with Santa and some recognizable music, the show also features rich dialogue that is a great chance for older kids to follow the story, but that might lose the interest for the littlest audience members at times.Miracle cover

Miracle on 34th Street is set in the post WWII era, which gives us the opportunity to share with our kids how things were different.  One of the main characters was in the Marines, and uses words like “dames” in reference to some ladies and “the head” when talking about the restroom, which can be explained in today’s context.  And an explanation or Google search for “Gimble’s” and “Macy’s” before the show could help them understand that during that time period Gimble’s and Macy’s were real stores and heated competitors, not just the men who were in the show.

How families benefit:

Thanks to Moonlight Musicals, we’ve had the chance to enrich our children with the inspirational, magical, and yes miraculous, world of performing arts.  And what some may not realize, or forget at times, is that Moonlight Musicals is a 501(c)3 nonprofit.  As parents, we can feel that purchasing a ticket to their performances is a win/win: our kids are exposed to high-quality theatre giving us precious time together and conversations about topics that are brought to light, plus we are supporting a local nonprofit.  The seeds planted by Moonlight Musicals throughout the community have been exciting to see take root and grow.  Every theatre department and group in the area has either been formed as an off-shoot or has greatly benefited from the multiple opportunities for children (and adults) to hone their on-stage experiences.  The vibrant Lubbock theatre community gives thankful parents many outlets for our kids to be able to tap into their inner star (and for some theatre parents it’s a God-send, giving our spirited kiddos the outlet they need!).

Just the Facts!

When: Thursday, November 16, 2017 7:30 PM.
Friday, November 17, 2017 7:30 PM.
Sunday, November 19, 2017 2:00 PM.
Monday, November 20, 2017 7:30 PM.
Friday, November 13, 2017 7:30 PM.
Saturday, November 14, 2017 2:00 PM.
Saturday, November 14, 2017 7:30 PM.
Sunday, November 15, 2017 2:00 PM.

Where: Lubbock Memorial Civic Center Theatre. 1501 Mac Davis Lane, Lubbock, TX 79401.

How: Tickets are available at Select-a-Seat, online, or by calling 806-770-2000. Prices Range from Prices range from $prices range from $15 – $35 for children and from $25 – $65 for adults.

Length: Lasts approximately 2 hours with a 20 minute intermission included.

Age: Recommended for ages 4+ but best for 6+ .  Younger kids may get antsy at times.

Going to the show?  Let us know!  Write your reviews below.


Credits:  Book, Music & Lyrics by Meredith Willson.  Based on the 29th Centrury Fox Pictures.  Story by Valentine Davies.  Screen Play by George Seaton.
All rights to Willson’s song catalog owned by Sir Paul McCartney.

Images from Lubbock Moonlight Broadway 2017 production of Miracle on 34th Street – the Musical,, and Kim Phillips.

2015 Lubbock Area Holiday Performing Arts Guide for Kids & Families

FaLaLa Slide

Fa La La La Lubbock!  Take a holiday season time-out to enjoy the Fine Arts boom we enjoy in the Lubbock area… where holiday-themed performances in theatre, dance, music, and arts abound!

Holiday concerts are frequently a child’s first experience in a concert hall… a wonderful opportunity to strengthen the entire family’s appreciation and interest in the arts. And almost all are family-friendly and affordable!  Whether it’s the majesty of the full symphony orchestra or the acoustic sounds of the season in a neighborhood church, take a breath and enjoy the richness that the season brings!  So many opportunities to share old favorites or create new holiday arts traditions that our kids will introduce to their own families!

Note:  Events are in order by opening date and include links for ticket information.  And check our super-sized, searchable Sights and Sounds of the Season section for dozens more ideas for winter fun – search by child’s age, interests and dates!

“Coney Island Christmas” presented by Lubbock Community Theatre.
Dec. 3-6 and 10-13 @ The Lubbock Community Theatre (42nd & Boston).
Thurs, Fridays & Saturdays at 7:30 pm and Sundays at 2:00 pm. Rated G. $10 Child / $15 Adult.
A holiday show for people of all ages and all faiths, CONEY ISLAND CHRISTMAS introduces us to Shirley Abramowitz, a young Jewish girl who (much to her immigrant parents’ exasperation) is cast as Jesus in the school’s Christmas pageant. As Shirley, now much older, recounts the memorable story to her great-granddaughter.  Tickets available online.

“A Christmas Story” presented by Children and Adults Theatrical Studios (CATS Playhouse).
Fri.12/4, Sat.12/5 & Sun. 12/6 and Fri. 12/11 & Sun.12/13 @ CATS Playhouse
2257 34th St.
Friday & Saturday performances are at 7:30pm. Sunday performances are at 2:30pm. Adults $10, Students/Seniors $7. Purchase tickets online.
Humorist Jean Shepherd’s memoir of growing up in the midwest in the 1940s follows 9-year-old Ralphie Parker in his quest to get a genuine Red Ryder BB gun under the tree for Christmas. Directed by Lisa Hernandez.

The Nutcracker Ballet – performed by Ballet Lubbock.
Thurs. 12/10 – Sun. 12/13.
All performances are @ the Civic Center Theatre.
It’s not Christmas until you’ve seen The Nutcracker!  Lubbock’s favorite holiday tradition. Tickets available through Select-a-seat and through the Ballet Lubbock website.

The Nutcracker presented by Ballet Lubbock

Ballet Lubbock’s ‘The Nutcracker’ (Facebook)

“Cactus Family Christmas” Concert.
Sat. 12/5 & 12/12; Thurs. 12/17; Tues. 12/22 & Wed. 12/23 @ 7:30pm.
All performances are at The Cactus Theater.
$15 / child (9 & under), $25 / ages 10 & up.
Continuing the Cactus tradition…  Join the Cactus stars, along with our newest faces from 2015, as they “don” the stage for a spectacular Christmas celebration presenting traditional holiday classics as well as contemporary favorites.  These concerts always sell out, so get your tickets early!  Call 806-762-3233 or go online for tickets.

Annual Caprock Celtic Christmas Concert.
Sat. 12/12 from 7-9pm: Annual Caprock Celtic Christmas concert @ the Maedgen Theater at Texas Tech. Students (with ID) free. Adults $10.50. Seniors $4.50.
Singers, players, dancers, storytellers, and more gather to perform traditional repertoires of the session, instrumental dance tunes and slow airs, and much more. For tickets call: 770-2000 or purchase online.

Flying J Wranglers’ Western Christmas Concert.
Sun. 12/13 @ the Cactus Theater.  $25.
The Flying J Wranglers from Ruidoso, NM and the Cactus Theater proudly bring you the annual Flying J Wranglers’ Western Christmas.  A holiday show that features rich melodious western yodeling, vocals, fiddle and guitars in a program of tradition favorites and new and classic western/cowboy Christmas songs, instrumentals and homespun comedy.  For a really special holiday treat, catch the lighthearted antics of the Wranglers this holiday season. Call 806-762-3233 or go online for tickets.

The Lubbock Symphony Orchestra’s Holiday Chamber Concert.
Tues. 12/15, 7:30pm @ St. John’s United Methodist Church (University & 15th Street).
Student $10, Adult $20.
Lubbock’s favorite annual holiday concert is sure to become your new tradition. Five of the finest brass musicians in North America invite you to join them in celebrating the season at this entertaining and informative evening. Featured twice on Performance Today, an NPR syndicated broadcast, the LSO Brass Quintet will definitely put you in the holiday spirit. This narrated performance features holiday selections from a variety of periods and styles.  Bring your family members and friends to this very special night of seasonal music. Tickets available through Select-A-Seat and online.

Annual Dean Killion Memorial Scholarship Concert.
Tues. 12/15 @ 7:30pm (West doors open at 7pm).
Admission is FREE; however, donations will be accepted for the Killion Scholarship Fund.
The Westwinds Brass Band Presents its Annual Dean Killion Memorial Scholarship Concert @ the Texas Tech Museum in the Helen DeVitt Jones Auditorium! . Enjoy traditional brass band favorites, marches, overtures, music from Broadway musicals, and a wide variety of sacred and secular Christmas music.

“Cactus Kids Christmas Celebration” Concert.
Sun. & Mon. 12/20 & 12/21, 7:30pm @ The Cactus Theater.
$15 / child (9 & under), $25 / ages 10 & up.
If you have never seen a Cactus Kids Christmas Concert, you are in for a real treat!  This is not just your average kid show – these are the best of the best from Terri Caldwell’s Music program.  Kids from this program have appeared on national television programs such as “America’s Got Talent” and the “X Factor.”  You will be blown away by the talent as they are backed by “The Lubbock Texas Rhythm Machine” in this full blown professional show!  Bring your entire family for a wonderful night at the “Cactus Kids Christmas Celebration.”   Call 806-762-3233 or go online for tickets.


Originally appeared in 2013.  Updated for 2015