HUDSON -- Santa Claus is coming to town, and so is one of his self-appointed best friends, Buddy the Elf in “Elf, Jr.” by The Phipps Children’s Theater.
The musical follows the tale of Buddy, a rather tall elf whose toy production is slower than most, as he discovers he’s not originally from the North Pole. After Santa, played by Jackson O’Brien, reveals the truth to him, Buddy, played by Owen Olson, travels south to New York to meet his father, who much to Buddy’s dismay, is on the naughty list.
Walter Hobbs, played by Nicholas Lentz, is not open to the idea of a new son, especially one who comes singing in tights. His focus is on his work, and a pending holiday deadline to put out a new bestselling children’s book. In time Buddy finds his stepmother Emily, played by Joy Rambo, and his brother Michael, played by Jacob Hasapopoulos, to be more welcoming, though Buddy is dismayed to find they don’t believe in Santa.
A trip to the department store introduces Buddy to Jovie, played by Aja Bell, whose attitude contrasts Buddy’s chipper one, but the two quickly grow fond of one another.
As Christmas approaches, Buddy works to bring Christmas cheer to his new-found family.
The musical is a fun and festive tale that is perfect for the holiday season. Audiences will laugh at the antics Buddy stirs up, as he finds New York City to be a very different place from the North Pole.
Behind it all is an endearing desire to make people happy, something audience members will begin feeling themselves. With song and a bit of dance, Buddy helps remind us all what Christmas is really about.
After all, "the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear."
“Elf Jr.” runs through Dec. 21, with performances at 7 p.m. Fridays and 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Saturdays.