The 5 Best Things to Do in Houston This Weekend: Christmas...With Monkeys!

On Friday, standout musical theater stars Joe Kirkendall, Jennifer Gilbert, Joel Sandel, John Gremillion and Tamara Siler tackle The Great American Christmas Songbook in the Bayou City Concert Musicals holiday program Christmas on Broadway. Sharon Williams, president of Bayou City Concert Musicals, tells us that while the show is called Christmas on Broadway, that's just one genre on the program. "We're taking a rather broad definition of 'Broadway,'" she says. "We're including music from Broadway shows, film scores and the standards." And, yes, a few Christmas carols. "We're doing 'Little Drummer Boy' and 'Peace on Earth,' so there will be a little bit of traditional music, but most of the program is made up of pop and show tunes."

Under the direction of BCCM Musical Director Michael Mertz, the group sings "A Winter Wonderland," "I've Got My Love to Keep Me Warm," "Rocking Around the Christmas Tree" and "The Christmas Song." "We're jazzing 'em up a little. Jennifer Gilbert is going to sing "Hard Candy Christmas" from The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. We're keeping it fun." Fun, Williams is quick to point out, doesn't mean unsophisticated. Group numbers include "Believe," "Countdown to Christmas" from the Broadway show A Christmas Story, and "Jing-a-ling-a-ling," which is an Andrews Sisters song. "Those group numbers can get really complicated. [The singers] have to make it seem so easy, but there's a lot of difficulty in [the arrangements]. There's lots going on."

8 p.m. Ovations, 2536 Times Boulevard. For information, visit $25 to $35.

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