Creator/musical director/producer/accompanist Neil Berg has assembled a rich garland of Broadway and movie showstoppers that, whether you call them old chestnuts or evergreens, are reliable crowd-pleasers. He's thrown in a choice selection of Christmas songs and recruited five seasoned Broadway pros to perform them: Carter Calvert, Jeffrey Denman, Rita Harvey, Marc Kudisch and Ivan Rutherford. All have fine voices, and the skill and savvy to deploy them to maximum effect. Harvey gives us a spectacular “I Could Have Danced All Night” and, with Rutherford, a full-bloodedly theatrical rendition of “The Phantom of the Opera.” Rutherford eloquently performs “Something's Coming,” from West Side Story and “Bring Him Home,” from Les Miserables. Calvert offers a poignant “Memory,” from Cats, and provides a rousing first-act finale with “Don't Rain on My Parade.” Kudisch serves up “Where Is the Life That Late I Led,” “If I Were a Rich Man,” “You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” and, with Denman, a hilariously competitive “Oh Hanukah–O Christmas Tree.” Denman calls on his nimble dancing as well as vocal skills in “Give My Regards to Broadway” and “Singin' in the Rain” and delivers a wonderfully mellow “White Christmas.” And producer Berg performs a lush piano treatment of “Carol of the Bells.” Geffen Playhouse, 10886 Le Conte Ave., Wstwd.; schedule varies; check online for information. Through Jan. 2. (310) 208-5454, geffenplayhouse.com.
Fri., Dec. 17, 8 p.m.; Sat., Dec. 18, 3 & 8 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 19, 2 & 7 p.m.; Tue., Dec. 21, 8 p.m.; Wed., Dec. 22, 8 p.m.; Thu., Dec. 23, 3 & 8 p.m.; Fri., Dec. 24, 3 & 8 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 26, 2 & 7 p.m.; Tue., Dec. 28, 8 p.m.; Wed., Dec. 29, 8 p.m.; Thu., Dec. 30, 3 & 8 p.m.; Fri., Dec. 31, 7 & 9:30 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 2, 2 & 7 p.m., 2010
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