When Javy Pagan thinks of the holidays, he thinks of music.
Pagan, marketing and development director for Centre Stage, is directing “A Holly Jolly Christmas,” a family-friendly variety show filled with sketch comedy, Christmas music and more. The theater is presenting the holiday-themed show in December.
Pagan said he is inspired by the images, sounds, smells and memories attached to Christmas, and wanted to celebrate the holiday season as a whole, whether it be focused on Christmas, Hanukkah or just sharing the season with loved ones.
“You have some comedy, touching family moments and really somber Christmas moments packaged into a Christmas concert-type show,” Pagan said. “For me it all goes back to a family unit. Whether it is a mom and dad with kids or just a close group of friends.”
Music featured in the concert includes songs made famous by Bing Crosby, The Carpenters, Elton John, Stevie Wonder and others.
“It is about two hours of really, really good Christmas music,” Pagan said. “The songs are inspired by what I remember hearing growing up during the holidays.”
A performer in the play, Cindy Mixon, who also runs the Centre Stage box office, said the variety of the music in the play is unique.
“To me, these are songs everyone knows but we haven’t really done them in a live performance,” she said.
One of Pagan’s goals was to make sure the performance was uplifting and positive, especially for those who are away from family or have lost a family member during the holiday season. The performance, he said, is all about having fun and helping people remember the positive aspects of the holiday season.
“People get very blue,” Pagan said. “When putting the show and team of actors together, I wanted to make sure that both the actors and the audience leave the performance feeling light.”
Mixon said she feels Pagan achieved his goals.
“The sketches in the play help us to take a moment to just laugh at ourselves,” she said. “We have all experienced the stress of the holidays — the gift not being quite right or decorations not up to mom’s expectations.”
If you go
- What: “A Holly Jolly Christmas”
- When: Dec. 5-21 with matinees Dec. 14 and Dec. 21
- Where: Centre Stage, 501 River St., Greenville, S.C. 29601
- Cost: $25.50-$38.50
- Info: https://centrestage.org/ahollyjollychristmas/
Canned food drive
A canned food drive with Project Host will be held throughout the running of the show, so patrons can donate canned food. There will be a bin in the lobby where food can be dropped off.