A Christmas Wish 2017

Dec 19 2017 | By More

★★★★☆    Christmas Cheer

Usher Hall: Mon 18 Dec 2018
Review by Sarah Moyes

The MGA Academy gets right into the Christmas spirit with a selection of the best festive songs in A Christmas Wish at the Usher Hall.

It’s that time of year again when the local students from the MGA Academy put on their annual Christmas show. This year’s showcase features 250 young people performing a selection of Christmas songs from classic songs to pop hits, and everything in between.

Santa Scenes in A Christmas Wish. Pic Alex Schweitzer-Thompson

There’s such a wide variety of songs in the show that there’s more than enough to entertain the whole family.

A Christmas Overture opens the show giving us a glimpse of lots of different songs, before a collective “aww” rises from the audience when the lights go up to show the stage academics. The young children, some of whom seem like they’re up past their bedtime, give a very sweet performance of I Believe in You.

Other highlights of the first half include The Mariah Carey hit All I Want for Christmas accompanied by some very fast moving dancers and the beautifully sung Somewhere in My Memory which is a Christmas film classic from Home Alone.

The first act closes with a hilarious rendition of 12 Days of Christmas. This well-known song has been jazzed up a little for tonight’s performance mixing in lines from songs such as Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer while the singers literally fight over their lines, bringing the first act to a close in a hilarious unexpected fashion.

a definite highlight

These days it almost wouldn’t be a Christmas show without something from Frozen. However, rather than just performing another rendition of what some might say is a much overplayed song, the MGA dance class accompany an instrumental version of Let It Go with some beautiful ballet dancing. In particular, the four girls who are on pointe shoes are fantastic, a definite highlight of the entire show.

Never do a Tango with an Eskimo – complete with an Eskimo dancer – is another highlight of the second half, while Once In Royal David’s City is there to please the fans of more traditional Christmas offerings.

Just before the show finishes, details are revealed of the newly formed MGA Foundation which tonight’s performance is in aid of. The Foundation is a completely separate venture from The MGA Academy and has been established to help financially disadvantaged young people from Scotland study singing, acting and musical theatre at schools around the UK.

As the show comes to end with White Christmas, snow starts to fall down on the audience below. Once again, The MGA Academy have shown they can put on a fantastic family friendly show bringing Christmas cheer to Edinburgh at this festive time of year.

Running time: 2 hours 30 minutes (including one interval)
Usher Hall, Lothian Road, EH1 2EA
Monday 18 December only

MGA Acadamy website: www.themgaacademy.com.
Twitter: @themgaacademy.
Facebook: @themgaacademy.

The cast of A Christmas Wish. Pic Alex Schweitzer-Thompson


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