Raul Esparza and Orfeh Celebrate a New York City Christmas at Joe's Pub Dec. 20

By Adam Hetrick
December 20, 2010

Tony Award nominee Raul Esparza (Company) hosts New York City Christmas, the third annual benefit concert featuring Broadway folk singing new, hip and stirring arrangements of Christmas classics, Dec. 20 at Joe's Pub.



The 7 PM concert also includes Michael Buchanan (The Addams Family), Chester Gregory II (Cry-Baby, Tarzan, Hairspray), David Josefsberg (Altar Boyz, The Wedding Singer, Grease), Andy Karl (Legally Blonde, Altar Boyz, 9 to 5), Lindsay Mendez (Everyday Rapture, Grease), Orfeh (Legally Blonde, Footloose, Saturday Night Fever), acclaimed recording artist Anya Singleton, Elizabeth Stanley (Company, Cry-Baby, Million Dollar Quartet), Sally Wilfert (Assassins, Make Me a Song and the national tour of …Spelling Bee), Betsy Wolfe (Everyday Rapture, 110 in the Shade), Kay Trinidad, Christina DeCicco, Gaelen Gilliland and Shannon Antalan.

New York City Christmas is conceived, produced and music directed by Drama Desk nominee Lynne Shankel. Todd Underwood directs. Also appearing are musicians Shankel (on piano), Joe Mowatt (drums/percussion), Randy Landau (bass), Summer Boggess (cello), Cliff Lyons and Scott Kreitzer (saxophones), Peter Calo and Michael Aarons (guitars), Jeff Schiller (sax), Justin Smith (violin) and Jeremy Miloszewicz (trumpet).

Expect fresh, original approaches — pop, soul, R&B, rock and more — of holiday songs. The album — available for purchase at the concert, through iTunes, Amazon and the Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight Records website at www.sh-k-boom.com — features "Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town," "Silent Night," "New York Christmas," "O Holy Night," "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," "Still, Still, Still"/"The First Noel" and more.

Read the recent PlayBlog item about some new additions to this year's concert.

The brainchild of respected New York City music director-arranger-orchestrator Shankel (Cry-Baby, Summer of 42, Vanities, Altar Boyz, Extraordinary Ordinary and more), a sold-out 2008 concert at the Zipper Theatre raised money for ASTEP (Artists Striving To End Poverty). An album of the show surfaced in 2009 (on the Sh-K-Boom label, with proceeds going to ASTEP) and a second annual concert in 2009 sold out, at Joe's Pub. ASTEP and Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight Records present this new benefit for ASTEP.

VIP tickets $100 include dessert (provided by Sugarush; www.experiencesugarush.com) and champagne; $50 secures a general seat for the concert, $25 for standing room.

All proceeds from tickets to the show and album sales go to supporting ASTEP's mission to create positive change for young people in need across the globe.

Tickets are available by purchasing online through the Joe's Pub website at or at the box office. Joe's Pub is at The Public Theater at 425 Lafayette. Seating is limited. For more information about the concert, e-mail info@asteponline.org. For more information about ASTEP, visit www.asteponline.org.

Read about the 2009 release of the "New York City Christmas" album here.