For the second year in a row, a Jonathan Tessero helmed Christmas production will play an iconic Broadway theater for the holiday season. With creative produced and directed through Side Effects Include, his executive production shingle, the show will feature songs, sketches, scenes and two of the country’s most beloved crooners.
With its initial press announcement delivered live on ABC’s The View, Jonathan Tessero and the creative team were announced in the show’s New York Times exclusive announcement feature.
The production would end up being covered by more than 75 television, newspaper, and internet news sources with reviewers and celebrities enjoying the show tremendously:
- “A Christmas Miracle! Ruben and Clay’s Christmas directed by Jonathan Tessero is really funny.” New York Times
- “It will knock your socks off!… I laughed from the second it started… It is one of the best… you have to go see it. ” Whoopi on The View
- “Hilarious! The selection of classic Christmas carols, popular holiday songs, medleys of traditional favorites, and original numbers showcase Studdard’s smooth and soulful jazz-,blues-, and gospel- influences stylings and Aiken’s powerhouse vocals, effortlessly hitting and holding the big notes.” – DC METRO
- “That was awesome… truly beautiful… love love loved it!” – Hoda Kotb and Kathy Lee
- “Their O Holy Night is so lovely and powerful it seems to pierce the heavens.” New York Stage Review
- “The medleys are so non-stop, the gags so dad-worthy, the skits and sentimentality so on-cue that I looked in vain for the TV cameras.” – Pop Surfing
- “Wearing a succession of glitzy outfits and ugly sweaters Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken exhibit their renowned powerful singing, personability and a delightful rapport. The marvelous company sing, dance and appear in comic sequences all with distinctive verve. Jesse Joyce’s script is a skillful assembly of retro genre conceits linked by old-time humor with dashes of emotion. Jonathan Tessero’s expert direction and Lisa Shriver’s snappy musical staging contribute smooth pacing and momentum. Ruben & Clay’s Christmas Show is a prime opportunity for those seeking a merry diversion at the most wonderful time of the year.” Theatre Scene
- “Directed by Jonathan Tessero, the tone is set with a very funny opening sequence that has the stars, while trying to emote serious renditions of “Silent Night” and “Come All Ye Faithful,” also trying to out-Broadway each other with their visuals. TV variety is the inspiration for this sweet and sincere, where the stars are presented as a sort of Donny & Marie/Sonny & Cher comedy pair and based on the enjoyable antics now on display at the Imperial titled RUBEN & CLAY’S FIRST ANNUAL CHRISTMAS CAROL FAMILY FUN PAGEANT SPECTACULAR REUNION SHOW, the fellows have definitely found an interested viewer if they ever hosted a television variety program.” Broadway World