A young child in a gold-adorned white robe stood stage right bathed in a spotlight’s glaring luminance. “And soon, the wise men came to the manger,” the haloed-tyke proclaimed. Pretty standard Christmas pageant stuff — until the angelic adolescent threw in a kicker: “…along with other assorted characters.”
And assorted they were — from the traditional Gospel gathering of Mary, Joseph and a heavenly host of angels, to a Felliniesque flock that included Lady Gaga, Elton John, Abraham Lincoln, Las Vegas show girls, cheerleaders, cowpokes, hula dancers, Cap’n Crunch, Santa Claus, Bing Crosby, Charlie Brown and a “Star Wars” stormtrooper.
While one could easily be convinced they were caught up in a heavily-spiked-nog-leaden-dream, for parishioners of Burbank’s Westminster Presbyterian Church it was just business as usual as the Buena Vista Street church presented their highly unconventional seventh annual Christmas show this past week. Staged as “Nativity! The Musical,” this hysterical and yet touching blend of the Christmas story and pop culture has become a renowned yuletide experience that has earned fans from well beyond the Burbank borders.