To kick off the beginning of their Christmas Spectacular rehearsals, two Radio City Rockettes visited the Huntington Library Thursday to light up the room with crafts for their young fans.
Dressed in their signature candy cane-themed costumes, Danelle Morgan and Karen Ritchie were joined by a packed room full of local children, their parents and grandparents for a fun hour of creativity.
Several tables were set up with supplies for a craft that celebrates a new addition to the Christmas Spectacular. The Rockettes helped the children decorate their mini-mason jars filled with lights with Christmas-colored gems, stickers and markers.
“We have this whole new finale that we’re both really, really excited about,” Morgan said. “It brings part of the tradition that is the Rockette’s and the Christmas Spectacular, and it takes it to the next level with this really cool, innovative technology that we’re bringing in.”
Morgan said that before things get hectic with rehearsals, the Rockettes like to get out into the local communities, take pictures, talk to fans and have some fun. Children as young as two sat with their families placing stickers and gems on the sparking jars. Their eyes were wide and twinkling as the dancers helped them decorate their new little masterpieces.
The Huntington visit was just one of six appearances the Rockette’s were making around New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. The only other Long Island visit is Friday in Manhasset.
“We’re thrilled to be a chosen recipient of their visit,” Laura Giuliani, department head of the youth and parent services at the library, said. “It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity for the kids to see them in person.”
The event was only an hour long, but in that time, over a dozen families came in, posed with the dancers and chatted with the starlettes. Some kids even said they were excited to see the show, again, this year.
Ritchie said that the Radio City Christmas Spectacular really is a holiday tradition for anyone. “At Christmastime there’s nowhere else to celebrate the holidays than at Radio City Music Hall,” she said. “We always have such a great time, we have performances throughout the day, every day, so there’s always an opportunity to come on by and it is just tradition in New York City.”
Since the ’30s, the holiday show has been a staple for young and old alike. Everyone gets excited, even the grandparents, when the ladies form their famous (and impressive) high kickline – it never gets old.
“We’ve been around for many, many years and we have wonderful numbers that were from the beginning of our run in the 1930s,” Ritchie said. “There’s the Living Nativity and the Parade of the Wooden Soldiers, but we like to keep everything updated as well… so we have some new and exciting elements this year, as we do every other year.”
The 2018 Radio City Christmas Spectacular featuring the Radio City Rockettes will run from Nov. 9-Jan 1 at Radio City Music Hall. Tickets are on sale now.