Sunday, November 24, 2019

FPAC, Franklin TV, and Woonsocket Museum of Broadcast Technology Team Up to Bring Broadway to THE BLACK BOX for the Holidays

The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC), Franklin TV, and The Woonsocket Museum of Broadcast Technology will team up this December to bring a special holiday show to THE BLACK BOX. Together, they will present the world premiere of Christopher Rice's The Tappy Christmas Special: LIVE! based on Rice's viral #TAPPY video series which has been seen by more than 3 million people worldwide. Audiences are invited to be a part of the live studio audience at a magical, tap-dance infused, holiday special being filmed at THE BLACK BOX. The space will be transformed into a classic soundstage where Broadway's Christopher Rice will bring his Christmas variety show to life and whirl the audience away to a world filled with classic holiday songs, tap dancing feet, and special Broadway guests.

There's also a show behind the show: a story about what wondrously marvelous things can be accomplished when three nonprofit organizations combine their resources, skills, and efforts in common cause. Tappy Christmas will be a look back at the golden age of holiday TV specials enjoyed predominantly in the 1960s. Every year, these TV specials captured the festivities of the season. 

But how do you recreate a real 1960s TV special at THE BLACK BOX in 2019? That’s when Franklin TV ( got involved. After taking a moment to contemplate the creative challenges, Franklin TV Executive Director Peter Fasciano said, “We’re all in.”

Then, a third local nonprofit was added to the team: The Woonsocket Museum of Broadcast Technology ( Who better to provide real TV studio cameras that are authentic to the period? The museum often consults on and provides authentic studio equipment for major motion pictures and TV series. They ensure that old TV studio and control room sets are faithfully recreated. Together, the three artistic non profit organizations are recreating that old-school holiday TV Special at THE BLACK BOX.

Broadway’s Christopher Rice joined the FPAC family last season when he headlined the sold-out run of Disney's Newsies as Jack Kelly. Having just finished the run of Pretty Woman on Broadway, Rice's other credits include The Book of Mormon on Broadway, the national tours of West Side Story, White Christmas, and more. Rice’s viral #TAPPY videos rose to fame in 2013 with “‘Cups’ Tap Dance,” an intricate tap routine featuring Rice and other Broadway hoofers dancing to Anna Kendricks “Cups” from Pitch Perfect. 

Since then, he has choreographed, produced, and starred in numerous #TAPPY videos including two “Tappy Christmas Specials” featuring Broadway surprise guests stopping by to sing and dance for the holidays. These videos are the inspiration for the live show.

“We have an exciting lineup of Broadway and professional guest stars as well as some of our FPAC alumni,” says FPAC Director Raye Lynn Mercer. Rice and friends will also be joined by a select group of young local dancers chosen by Rice himself through a rigorous audition process. “That’s the best part about the holidays- you never know who might stop by!”

Christopher Rice’s The Tappy Christmas Special: LIVE! runs December 20-22 at THE BLACK BOX. General Admission/Tiered Seating is available at $36.00. Premier Table Seating, including reserved table seating, drink voucher, and an autographed cast photo, is available at $48.00. 

For tickets and more information, visit or call the box office at 508-528-3370

FPAC, Franklin TV, and Woonsocket Museum of Broadcast Technology Team Up to Bring Broadway to THE BLACK BOX
FPAC, Franklin TV, and Woonsocket Museum of Broadcast Technology Team Up to Bring Broadway to THE BLACK BOX

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