(l to r) Todd Almond, Betty Buckley (Photo composite provided by Fortune Creative.)
If you’re looking for a bit of holiday cheer in New York City this month, be sure to check out one of the city’s newest live performance venues, Chelsea Table + Stage, where Broadway’s Todd Almond will celebrate the release of his new holiday album, A Pony for Christmas, on Monday, December 13, 7 p.m.
Almond is an acclaimed songwriter and performer who can currently be seen as “Gideon Wolfe” on HBO Max’s “Gossip Girl” and on Broadway as “Elias Burke” in Conor McPherson and Bob Dylan’s Girl from the North Country. Betty Buckley, the Tony Award-winning Broadway legend, will be joining Todd as a special guest vocalist.
A Pony for Christmas, an inspired folk-pop take on the classic holiday album, weaves personal original compositions with new versions of traditional carols and unexpected reworkings of pop songs. The recording combines folk, rock, pop and theater influences. Almond strove to include selections that aren’t “Christmas” songs per se but say things like “thank you” (“Kind and Generous”), or “I miss my home” (“Welcome Home”) or “my childhood made me who I am” (a haunting mash-up of three Kate Bush compositions, “Hounds, Running, Clouds”).
The originals on the album include “Moon Over Nebraska,” perhaps Almond’s most requested song. The joyous “Welcome Home” originated from Almond’s musical The Odyssey, the third show he wrote and performed in for The Public Theater’s Public Works program, which he started with Lear deBessonet. The collection’s finale is a charming acoustic take on the timeless standard “I’ll Be Home for Christmas.”
Almond is known for his singular songwriting in addition to his work as an accomplished performer. He recently toured the U.S. in his original musical Kansas City Choir Boy starring alongside rock icon Courtney Love and starred in three of his original musicals at the famed Delacorte Theater in Central Park (The Tempest, The Winter’s Tale, and The Odyssey).
Theater legend Betty Buckley will be joining Almond for a special appearance. Buckley won a Tony Award for her performance as Grizabella in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats and received a second Tony Award nomination for her performance as Hesione in Triumph of Love. She recently guest-starred on the new Fox/Warner Bros. TV show “The Cleaning Lady,” which airs in January 2022, and NBC’s “Law & Order: SVU.” She recorded the audio play The Vanishing Negative by Aaron Mark for Audible in 2020. In addition, Ms. Buckley headlined the National Tour of the new Broadway production of Hello, Dolly! in 2018/2019.