Veteran performers Kenzie Davis (left) and Whitney Folkerson are singing elves in the Pickleville Playhouse production of ‘Once Upon a North Pole Christmas’ now playing at the Ellen Eccles Theatre in downtown Logan.

LOGAN – Once Upon a North Pole Christmas is a typical Pickleville Playhouse holiday show now playing at the Ellen Eccles Theatre in downtown Logan.

This original musical by TJ Davis has all the delightful theatrical elements we’ve come to expect from Pickleville productions: upbeat music, great vocal performances, zany characterizations, stylish dancing and that special brand of improvisational comedy that often prompts hysterical laughter on both sides of the footlights.

But the playwright and composer has also added to surprise ending to this production that serves a poignant reminder of the true magic of Christmas. It’s sure to inspire a lump in your throat.

Once Upon a North Pole Christmas features two parallel plots. One story focuses on a down-on-his-luck single father coping with the loss of his spouse. The other is a fantasy about elves trying to save Christmas when Santa Claus mysteriously vanishes.

TJ Davis plays both the troubled father Brandon and the elf Buster, who inherits the Christmas crisis. As usual, the multi-talented director tenderly sings most of the show’s ballads and plays straight man for his co-stars.

Pickleville veteran Jessica Oberg returns as TJ Davis’ late wife in all-too-brief but memorable scenes.

Fresh from a supporting role in the Pickleville Halloween production of The Addams Family, Kenzie Davis provides the voice of reason in both of the musical’s plot lines.

The scene-stealers in Once Upon a North Pole Christmas are Whitney Folkerson and Nathan Kremin, who play TJ Davis’ weird neighbors and feuding elves in the musical’s alternate plot line.

Both those performers take full advantage of every opportunity to ad lib during the musical, gleefully going off-script into pop-culture tangents and wild physical comedy bits with sidesplitting results.

The playwright’s real-life sons Hayden and KJ appear as (who else?) his sons in the musical.

Last but not least, the lovely foursome of Madison Stone, Sienna Hunt, Courtney Barker and Sarah McClure perform athletic contemporary and hip-hop dances choreographed by Sharli Davis King. The ensemble members look adorable with pointed elf ears and also sing up a storm.

Evening performances of Once Upon a North Pole Christmas will continue Saturday and Monday at the Ellen Eccles Theatre. A matinee performance is also set for Saturday at 3 p.m.

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