Jane Lynch, the villainous co-star of TV’s Glee who appeared on Broadway as Miss Hannigan in the 2012 revival of Annie, will show her merrier side in a holiday concert, A Swingin’ Little Christmas, which visits the Ridgefield Theatre in Ridgefield, Connecticut, December 2 as part of a whirlwind late fall tour.
The Emmy and Golden Globe Award winner told Playbill that her concert draws on Lynch family Christmas traditions when she was growing up in Dolton, Illinois. She said that one year her father came home with an LP compilation of Christmas songs that was being given out for free at the local Firestone tire store. “It had Jack Jones, Rosemary Clooney, Bing Crosby, all singing Christmas songs with a jazzy Big Band beat. Before the 1950s a lot of the Christmas music was very traditional. But the 1950s era brought in the Perry Comos and the Rosemary Clooneys. That, to me, is Christmas, musically. As it is for Tony.”
That’s Tony Guerrero, her music director, arranger and co-star, who will appear with Tim Davis in the concert, performing three-part harmonies on some of the songs. Most of them will be “songs everybody recognizes,” including “We Three Kings,” “Up on the Housetop,” a “Jingle Bells” medley, and a special arrangement of Handel’s “Hallelujah” chorus, titled “Swingin’ Hallelujah.”
There will also be a less-known song, “Carol of the Russian Children,” which will be presented on the tour in a new arrangement by Davis.
Lynch, who hosts the TV series Hollywood Game Night on NBC, recently made a guest appearance with Andrew Rannells as a gay conversion therapist on the sitcom Will & Grace.
To order the $75 tickets for the 8 PM December 2 Ridgefield concert, click here.
Currently, Lynch said she's pitching a daytime show to Warner Bros that would consist entirely of “good news, small kindnesses big kindnesses, to break through all the crap we’re going through these days. And I’d love it to have a live audience.”
For Lynch, who hadn’t worked on stage in more than a decade when she took over the Miss Hannigan role on Broadway, “that lit a fire in me again” to appear before a live audience. She said she’s “always open” to returning to the legitimate stage if the right role comes along.
Does she have a dream role? Oh yes: ”One word: Hamilton. The king’s songs are right in my key!”
The A Swingin’ Little Christmas tour will launch November 28 at the Newark Theatre in Portland, Oregon, with further stops planned in Seattle, Washington; San Francisco, California; Escondido, California and elsewhere, including a two-day stop at the City Winery in New York City on December 3 and 4. Click here for a complete list of tour stops.