Holiday Shows Light Up Grunin Center

Nov 22, 2017
Ballet for Young Audiences presents “The Nutcracker” on Dec. 9.

A variety of holiday performances – from music and dance to theater and children’s shows – are scheduled throughout this month and next at the Jay and Linda Grunin Center for the Arts on the Ocean County College campus in Toms River. Tickets are available now.

The OCC Repertory Theatre Company presents “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” which the college calls “a unique and entertaining spin on an age-old tale,” at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 30, Dec. 1 and Dec. 8; at 8 p.m. on Dec. 2 and Dec. 9; and at 2 p.m. on Dec. 3 and Dec. 10, in OCC’s Black Box Theatre. “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever has an edge – but the edge is funny, irreverent, and irresistible,” the college explains. “Author Barbara Robinson’s prose is fast, clever and very funny. Though it’s all in fun, it offers a subtle but important lesson: Just because you’re bad doesn’t mean you’re hopeless.”

Yates Musical Theatre’s adaptation of “A Christmas Carol,” at 1 p.m. Dec. 2 on the main stage, is an OCC tradition, as is the Ocean County College Band’s holiday show scheduled for 7 p.m. that evening.

On Dec. 3, at noon, catch Tim McLoone & the Holiday Express Band’s Holiday Express Family Matinee. The nonprofit band, comprised of more than 100 musicians from the Jersey Shore, will perform a mix of traditional, gospel and rock ’n’ soul holiday music.

The following weekend, at 1 p.m. on Dec. 9, Ballet for Young Audiences presents “The Nutcracker.”

Then, on Dec. 14, at 7:30 p.m., the Vienna Boys Choir takes the stage. “Under the direction of conductor Manolo Cagnin, these gifted young singers display voices of unforgettable beauty in a Christmas in Vienna, an extraordinary program featuring Austrian folk songs, classical masterpieces, popular songs and, of course, holiday favorites,” the college expains.

The popular Westminster Concert Bell Choir – composed of 16 undergraduate and graduate students from Westminster Choir College of Rider University – is set to perform the following day, at 7:30 p.m. Dec 15.

Meanwhile, youngsters will enjoy “A Garfield Christmas,” at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 21.

And, finally, at 8 p.m. on Dec. 23, Irish dance and Christmas come together for “Carol of the King,” an Irish dance spectacular.

For more information or to purchase tickets, call the Grunin Center box office at 732-255-0500 or visit  —J.K.-H.

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