Fa-la-la-la femme

December Divas
7:30 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 3 p.m. Sunday Lyric Plaza Theatre
1725 N.W. 16th

The brainchild of Lyric’s artistic director Michael Baron, “December Divas” is a unique holiday show meant to provide a showcase for Lyric talent and an alternative to traditional Christmas shows.

Having successfully programmed and directed many of the cabarets at Signature Theatre in Washington, D.C., before coming to Lyric, Baron said he wanted to develop one at Lyric because they are fun for both the audiences and the performers.

“It’s a delightful way to get to know the performers Lyric features throughout the year, share a bit of trivia about some of the holidays most beloved classics, and introduce some new songs as well,” he said. “It’s like ‘Sex in the City: The Holiday Special.’ The show features five fantastic and funny women who all have wonderful voices singing about 20 holiday songs, backed up by a jazz trio led by music director Brian Hamilton.”

Some of the songs include “We Need a Little Christmas,” “Hard Candy Christmas,” “Turkey Lurkey Time,” “Merry Christmas, Darling” and “Silent Night.”

“Since I was raised in an interfaith home where my mother is Lutheran and my father is Jewish, we’re also doing a Hanukkah diva medley fea turing Barbra Streisand songs from ‘Yentl,’” Baron said.

He added that “Divas” is a more relaxed and intimate show than what Lyric usually presents.

“The audience can bring drinks with them into the theater and just enjoy themselves away from the hustle and bustle of the holidays,” he said.

The “Divas” cast includes five of Lyric’s distinguished leading ladies: Beth Adele, Mandy Jiran, Heather Geery-Mayfield, Parish Mechling and Barb Schoenhofer.

Lyric veteran and Wichita-based actress Schoenhofer said it’s an honor to take part.

“All of the girls in the show I’ve worked with before and are wonderful, talented women that I adore,” said Schoenhofer, adding it’s always a pleasure to return to OKC for a show, as Lyric is her favorite theater. “The way it’s run is amazing. I always know that whatever show I’m going to do there will be great.”

Baron said that while he plans to present more cabarets at Lyric in the future, “Divas” is a one-off event, as Lyric will present its own take on “A Christmas Carol” next year.

“To have this group of talented women all on stage together is going to be an enormous treat for everybody,” Schoenhofer said. “It’s a great alternative to the usual office Christmas party and a cool way to begin an evening on the town.”

Eric Webb

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