Tag Archive | Sanders Theater

Christmas ‘Revels 2019’ (Cambridge), ‘An American Experience’ — Was ‘OK’.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.




Of course, by definition, going to Christmas ‘Revels’, at the mothership, in Cambridge (MA), at the sensually delectable ‘Sanders Theatre‘, is always a wonderful, rewarding experience — and last night, December 19, 2019, was no exception.

But, for I, an unashamed lover of ‘Revels‘ (who has seen over 20 productions, at least 8 of them in Cambridge), this was (alas) but just an ‘OK’ show. SORRY.

On a scale of 1 to 10, I would say it came in at 5.5. If you kicked me hard and said ‘be generous, it is Christmas, cut them slack’ — I would say ‘5.6’.

It (sadly) lacked pizzazz and joyousness. It was sombre and dragging. It felt tired and lethargic. SORRY.

Yes, the theme was that of the 1930s Dust-Bowl and it sure felt like that!

Kind of interesting. For whatever reason trying to do American theme Revels is HARD (though the 2016 ‘Acadian’ theme was a HIT, maybe because of its ‘International’ flavor). Check this out and as I wrote on the image ‘DITTO’.

Click to access this post from 6-years ago.


Yes, each and every Revels cannot be a HIT, and if we don’t have mediocre ones we will never be able to truly appreciate the truly great ones. So, I am cool. Of course we will be there next year. Just hope they go back to doing a FUN European-themed one.


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by Anura Guruge

Did YOU Get Tickets For Christmas ‘Revels 2019’ (Cambridge) — I Did, Front Row And All (As Ever).

by Anura Guruge


Click image to buy tickets. Tickets still available. Mind you, NOT as good as mine! SMILE.


I had tickets, bought & PAID, 4-minutes
after they went on sale!

Click to ENLARGE.


Buying tickets for Christmas Revels the DAY they go on sale to the public has been a cherished, yearly ritual for at least the last 8-years. It used to be for ‘Revels North‘ (at Dartmouth) and it had to be the front row.

The last few years we have been going to the ‘mothership’, the original Revels in Cambridge, Mass at the incomparably beautiful Sanders Theatre. We like the center balcony seats. At first I only managed to get the 2nd row — which wasn’t bad. But, I wanted to very front row. Last year I succeeded! I had my finger on the button at 12:00 so I can get in. Obviously MEMBERS had been able to buy tickets for a ‘month’ prior to I so quite few seats were gone.

This year was going to be difficult. We were in Maine for a wedding. We would have been checked out of the hotel by noon, so it was IMPERATIVE that we were somewhere with reliable Wi-Fi well ahead of noon. We went to my sister-in-law’s place. I had all the credentials (URL, passwords, seat numbers) in TRIPLICATE — on paper & electronically. I do not take chances. Worked out. SMILE. More seats had been booked by members this year than last. But, I still snagged 5 front row seats. They are good. We are happy. We already know who is seated where!

I am happy. See you there. Cheers.


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by Anura Guruge

Did YOU Get Tickets For Christmas ‘Revels 2018’ (Cambridge) — I Did.

by Anura Guruge


Click image to BUY tickets.


I had tickets, bought & PAID, 3-minutes
after they went on sale!

Click to ENLARGE and admire.


Buying tickets for Christmas Revels the DAY they go on sale to the public has been a cherished, yearly ritual for at least the last 7-years. It used to be for ‘Revels North‘ (at Dartmouth) and it had to be the front row.

The last few years we have been going to the ‘mothership’, the original Revels in Cambridge, Mass at the incomparably beautiful Sanders Theatre. We like the center balcony seats. The last few years I have only managed to get the 2nd row — which isn’t bad. But, I wanted to try for the very front row.

The tickets went on sale, to the general public, at 12:00pm today, Saturday, October 20, 2018. It was on my online calendar for the last 2-days.

I made sure that I completed my 3.5-mile run early just to be on time. I was at my computer, ready to go, at 11:40am. By 11:55am, I was logged on — credit card in hand.

Right at noon, as soon as the ‘BUY’ button appeared I was on it. It took a few seconds for it to respond. No messing around. I knew exactly what 4 seats I wanted. Went straight for them — like a laser. Snagged them. No messing around. Paid for them.

All done in 3-minutes. I am sure I was one of the first to buy tickets. I am happy. See you there. Cheers.


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by Anura Guruge

Of Course I Know R.M.S. Carpathia, The Setting For The Christmas Revels In Hanover, NH & Cambridge, MA.

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

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by Anura Guruge


Related post:
Christmas Revels At Dartmouth, NH: Tickets Went On Sale Today
August 15, 2012.
Revels North (i.e., Hanover, NH at Dartmouth) and Revels (Cambridge, MA) Doing Same Irish 1907 Christmas Show
Sept. 2, 2012.

British, Cunard Royal Mail Ship (R.M.S.) Carpathia (named after an European mountain chain). ‘Royal Mail’ designates that it was licensed to carry mail for the British Royal Mail.



R.M.S. Carpathia, true to its designation ‘Royal‘, is the HEROIC British Cunard liner, under the command of an intrepid British captain, Capt. Arthur Henry Rostron, that rescued 710 souls after the Titanic disaster on April 15, 1912.

Carpathia which got there two hours after the sinking, after a four hour dash, saved the day and most of those in the water. The Carpathia and its crew were lauded as heroes — Capt. Rostron was knighted by the British and received the Congregational Gold Medal from the U.S. That is the Carpathia. [We will not talk about the S.S. Californian that for reasons unknown did not go to rescue.]

The Revels is set in the Carpathia in (December ) 1907. I find the choice of that day (not to mention the ship) cute. This year, 2012, is the 100th year anniversary of the Titanic disaster. So, Revels is kind of exploiting that. By saying 1907 they are getting a 5 year separation from the 1912 event. As it transpired the Germans torpedoed and sank the Carpathia in July 1918. So 1907 is cute.

It will be good. The Carpathia is a much loved ship — especially by anyone who knows anything about the Titanic.

I have to now confess that I am a vicarious Titanic buff; my son from 1995 to about 2003 (from when he was 3 to about 11) being totally and utterly obsessed by the Titanic. During those years all things Titanic ruled his life — and consequently mine. We still have SOME of the artifacts from those years of Titanic fever. There are at least two models of the Titanic in the house — one of them an Airfix model that I painted and constructed (the only model out of close to a hundred that I ever bothered to paint properly). We also have a small metal model in the dinning room. Matthew, my son, also got an amazing cross-stitch of the Titanic. That is on the wall. I just went and counted. Not counting a few books that Devanee has ‘borrowed’ for her room over the years, I have 13 books (from what I can see) on the Titanic. There might be a few more around.


Not sure exactly how Matthew, around age 3, got so involved in the Titanic. It started with a fascination of sunken wrecks and then homed in on the Titanic — most likely given all the stuff he could watch on TV, even then, about Bob Ballard and the Titanic.

In the Summer of 1995 I was doing a number of seminars in the U.K. We all went over. I took the kids to Greenwich (as in G.M.T.) because of the huge, scenic park and the boat ride on the Thames to get there. We straddled the GMT line, and the kids as I expected ran riot in the park. Then we went into the museum. Matthew wondered off. On the wall there were these huge, old oil nautical paintings — many of them involving ship wrecks, Greenwich touting its role in facilitating navigation to minimize maritime disasters. I found him intently studying a picture of a sinking ship, talking to himself. It was like an epiphany. He was into ship wrecks.

For the next 18 months, more or less non-stop, to anybody that would listen, he would talk about the ‘Dumpster House’ — or something that sounded like that. We have never got to the bottom of that. He definitely was referring to the Greenwich Maritime Museum, but called it the ‘Dumpster House’. [We can’t remember, but maybe he saw a dumpster outside the building.] The ‘Dumpster House’ was synonymous with ship wrecks. Matthew, as was my older daughter, Danielle, three years older, were water rats. We had got our first lake house and boat the year Matthew was born. To Matthew water and boats were part of his life.

So OUT Titanic odysseys began. I got him books. He watched National Geographic and Discovery. He had a denim Titanic shirt, a green T-shirt and a cap. I think we still have the cap, Devanee having appropriated it from her brother.

When the movie came out in 1997 he couldn’t go to see it. He was 5. So I got him the 2-tape set the day it became available. Now we get to an aiding image I have of my two older children. Danielle took it upon herself to make sure that Matthew, all of 5, will NOT see any of the ‘inappropriate’ ‘girlie’ parts in the movie — she was particularly concerned about the scene in the car (in the hold). She would either fast forward the tape when it got close to that section or she would cover his eyes with her hand. There were days when Matthew would watch the movie twice a day. I can still see them, Danielle with her hands clasped over Matthews eyes and the TV showing the rocking car.

So, this is why I know the Carpathia — plus in April we, Deanna and the two younger kids, watched about 6 hours worth of new, 2012 documentaries on the Titanic.

Revels North (i.e., Hanover, NH at Dartmouth) and Revels (Cambridge, MA) Doing Same Irish 1907 Christmas Show

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

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by Anura Guruge


Related post:
Christmas Revels At Dartmouth, NH: Tickets Went On Sale Today — August 15, 2012.

Talk about déjà vu all over again. Actually, to be honest, given that I worry about it on a constant basis as I get older, I thought I was cracking up and not going to the right Web sites. It was the SAME picture. Confused me, to start with, no end. I am easy to confuse.

So here is the Revels North, Hanover/Dartmouth picture — the show to which we already have front row seats.

The 1907 Irish experience Revels by ‘North’ at Dartmouth.


Publicity photo for Cambridge Revels. The similarity is uncanny. (Click to visit the Cambridge Web site). Got me thinking. Where is this picture from. I checked the movie.


This is fine. Totally their prerogative. I am just disappointed. I was hoping to see two different Revels as we had done last year — albeit that being the first year we had made the trek down to Cambridge for Revels. Last year they did a Medieval Mediterranean Christmas in Cambridge while it was the traditional British Victorian in Hanover. We all love British Revels. I, however, enjoyed the Mediterranean frolics. So, this year, I was hoping to see the Irish at Dartmouth and maybe British at Cambridge. Alas no.

Kind of interesting. Two separate, independent productions; obviously the Cambridge effort being bigger and grander. Hhhmmm. From an economic standpoint that does not make sense to me — with my engineering background. If Cambridge did 1907 Ireland this year, Hanover could have borrowed the scenery, props and costumes for 2014, with Hanover, in 2012, borrowing the Mediterranean from Cambridge from last year. But, I am just an attendee. They obviously know what they are doing — given how successful they are. The Cambridge Christmas Revels are at the incomparable (to the U.S.) Sanders Theater. Wow, what a beautiful building. It brought tears to the eyes of a homesick Brit like me. So European. We lucked out. When we went last Christmas we were ‘lost’. So we asked this older gentleman how to get to the Sanders. He was with his daughter, who was about Deanna’s age. His face lit up. He insisted, though this was late December, on walking us to the Theater. He was an ex-Harvard Professor of History. He gave me a history lesson on the Theater. He took us to the door. We lucked out. Yes, we will be going back to the Sanders soon. He also pointed us towards a wonderful ‘store’ that did a buffet meal — with Indian food. It was perfect, for me.

The building that houses the Sanders Theater.

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