The Christmas Revels:
A Nordic Celebration of the Winter Solstice

December 14-29, 2018

18 Performances - Matinees & Evenings

Harvard University's Sanders Theatre, Cambridge, MA

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A holiday tradition for nearly five decadesThe Christmas Revels is a joyful theatrical celebration of the winter solstice that travels the world each year showcasing cultural traditions including music, dance, folktales and rituals. This year we explore the magic of the Northlands! 


ABOUT THIS YEAR'S PRODUCTION

The 48th annual Christmas Revels celebrates the traditions and musical culture of the Nordic nations – Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden - countries with some of the strongest traditions of solstice celebration and ritual. 

SYNOPSIS:

Setting – Sweden early 1900's 

Sven is a dreamer and his father’s patience is wearing thin. It is Christmas and the big house is bustling with preparations for a party that will bring together ministers and dignitaries from all the Scandinavian countries to meet the new ambassador of Finland. The seasonal festivities do little to reduce Sven’s moodiness that is tied to the loss of a favorite uncle. Change comes in the guise of three unusual Christmas presents.  They usher Sven into an alternative universe populated by witches, snakes and superheroes where he is reunited with his late uncle in a series of life-changing adventures.


Propelled by the narrative of the Kalevala, the Finnish epic poem, and illuminated by the ethereal sounds of nyckelharpa, hardingfele, kantele, and Swedish fiddle, our story takes us via fjords and rivers all the way to the icy mountains of the Northlands and back. Count on trolls, dragons and house elves to pop up. Perhaps even Hamlet. And of course, we'll have our familiar touchstones like "The Lord of the Dance" and "The Shortest Day."

With gorgeous melodies, rich choral harmonies and filigree ornamentation this is a rare musical experience awaiting your participation. See you at Sanders this Christmas!


The Christmas Revels
 performance length is about 2.5 hours including an intermission.