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A CurtainUp Review
Donny & Marie: A Broadway Christmas
By Miriam Colin
They manage to make their jokes land to laughs and to keep things lively they don an array of dazzling, costumes and even run up and down the Marquis aisles. To lend support, there's a band (it's loud) as well eight dancers. Oh, and not to be ignored, the big screens above the stage for filmed bits of the Osmonds' TV history as well as to give us a close-up of their current, sweat inducing showmanship.
A filmed montage of their long career trajectory is followed by a solo musical medley by sister (it includes a bit of audience participation, with Marie and her chosen male of the night dancing and singing " Blue Christmas") then, a brother solo (Donny's set ties him to rock' n' roll and is likely to make you wish you'd brought ear plugs). Unsurprisingly, things wind up with a joint sibling segment that reminds anyone who missed their triumphs on Dancing With the Stars that they are seasoned hoofers via a mambo from West Side Story that leaves them both breathless. It's when on-stage together-- singing, dancing and teasing each other -- that it's easiest for even a non-Osmond enthusiast to come close to understanding the appeal of these performers and this show.
Despite modern Broadway technological bells and whistles such as laser lights and fog machinery, it feels like being a guest in the studio where an Osmond TV special is being recorded -- only at Broadway ticket prices. Apparently the cost is not a deterrent. The energy expended to show their fans a lively good time is paying off. As nostalgia buffs have rushed to see The Pee Wee Herman Show and Rain, the faux-Beatles concert, Donny & Marie: A Broadway Christmas has proved it's one-of-a-kind nostalgia appeal by announcing an extension to January 2nd.