Billing

Requirements

Under the terms and conditions of your organisation’s Performance Agreement, the following credits must appear on all advertising (including websites) relating to the production. Credits must be reproduced faithfully in accordance with the following layout. No alterations or deletions can be permitted unless stated below.
Percentages listed indicate required type size in relation to title size.
PLAID TIDINGS
(100%)
Holiday Edition of FOREVER PLAID
BY
STUART ROSS
 
Original FOREVER PLAID vocal and musical arrangements by JAMES RAITT
(75%)
 
VOCAL and MUSICAL ARRANGEMENTS BY
JAMES RAITT
BRAD ELLIS
RAYMOND BERG
DAVID SNYDER
 
Musical Continuity and Supervision by
David Snyder
 
ORIGINAL DIRECTION AND MUSICAL STAGING
BY
STUART ROSS
 
Licensee understands that they must also rent the Perry Como Video. The Perry Como Video must be ordered when you return your contract or your contract will not be accepted by MTI.
Licensee further agrees to insert in each program of the Play the credit line for each of the compositions and the program notes as described below.
The Songs
 
Amor
Music & Lyrics by Gabriel Galindo Ruiz and Sunny Skylar
Published by Peermusic International
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Bésame Mucho
Music & Lyrics by Consuelo Velázquez
English Lyrics by Sunny Skylar.
Published by Peermusic International
Arranged by Brad Ellis.
 
Carol of the Bells
Music & Lyrics by Mykela Leontovich and Peter J. WIlhousky
Published by Carl Fischer Music
Arranged by David Snyder & Raymond Berg
 
The Christmas Song
Music and Lyrics by Melvin H. Torme and Robert Wells
Published by SONY/ATV Tunes and MPL Communications
Arranged by David Snyder
 
Cool Yule
Music & Lyrics by Steve Allen
Published by Meadowlane Music
Arranged by Brad Ellis.
 
Day-O
Music & Lyrics by William Attaway and Irving Burgie
Published by Cherry Lane Music Publishing Company, Inc.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Deus Ex Plaid
Traditional Gregorian Chant
Arranged by James Raitt
 
The Dreidel Song
Traditional.
Arranged by David Snyder
 
Fever
By Eddie Cooley and John Davenport
Published by Fort Knox Music and Trio Music Company, Inc.
Arranged by David Snyder
 
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
Music & Lyrics by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane
Published by EMI Feist Catalog, Inc.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Hey There
Music & Lyrics by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross
Used by Permission of J & J Ross Co and Lakshimi
Published by The Songwriters Guild
Arranged by Raymond Berg
 
Holiday For Strings
Music by David Rose
Lyrics by Sammy Gallop
©1944 (Renewed) David Rose Publishing Co. (ASCAP) All rights reserved. Used by permission.
Arranged by Brad Ellis.
 
Holiday Talk
Music by Brad Ellis, Lyrics by Brad Ellis & Stuart Ross
Arranged by Brad Ellis
 
Home For The Holidays
Music & Lyrics by Robert Allen and Al Stillman
Used by permission of Charlie Deitcher Productions, Inc. and Music Sales Corp.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
I'll Be Home For Christmas
Music & Lyrics by Kim Gannon, Walter Kent and Ram Buck
Published by Gannon & Kent Music Company
Arranged by Raymond Berg
 
It's Beginning to Look Like Christmas
Music & Lyrics by Meredith Willson
Published by MPL Communications
Arranged by Raymond Berg
Video clip used by permission of Research Video, Inc.
 
Jamaica Farewell
By Lord Burgess
Published by Cherry Lane Music Publishing Company, Inc.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Jingle Bells
Traditional
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Joy To The World
Traditional
Arranged by David Snyder
 
Kingston Market
By Irving Burgie
Published by Cherry Lane Music Publishing Company, Inc.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Kiss of Fire
Music & Lyrics by Lester Allen and Robert Hill
Adapted from "El Choclo" by A. G. Villoldo.
Used by permission of Universal-Duchess Music Corporation (BMI)
Arranged by Brad Ellis.
 
Let It Snow
By Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne
Published by Warner/Chappell Music
Arranged by Raymond Berg & David Snyder
 
Little Town of Bethlehem.
Traditional
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Mambo Italiano
Music & Lyrics by Bob Merrill
Published by Golden Bell Songs
Arranged by Raymond Berg
 
Matilda, Matilda
Music & Lyrics by Norman Span
Used by permission of MCA Music Publishing, a division of MCA Inc.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Mele Kalikimaka
Music and Lyrics by R. Alex Anderson
Used by permission of Universal-Polygram International Publishing, Inc. (ASCAP)
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Merry Christmas
Music & Lyrics by Fred Spielman and Janice Raitt.
Published by EMI Robbins Catalog Inc.
Arranged by David Snyder
 
A Mixmaster Christmas
Traditional.
Arranged by Brad Ellis & Raymond Berg
 
Moments To Remember
Music by Robert Allen
Lyrics by Al Stillman.
Used by permission of Larry Spier, Inc. and Charlie Deitcher Productions.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year
Music & Lyrics by Edward Pola and George Wyle
Published by Barnaby Music Corp., c/o Rosenfeld, Meyer, & Sussman
Arranged by David Snyder
 
Mr. Santa (authorized version of Mister Sandman)
Music & Lyrics by F. D. Ballard
Used by permission of Edwin H, Morris & Company, a Division of MPL Communications, Inc.
Arranged by David Snyder
 
Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
Music & Lyrics by John D. Marks
Published by St. Nicholas Music, Inc.
Arranged by David Snyder
 
Sha-Boom (Life Could Be A Dream)
Music & Lyrics by Jimmy Keyes, Carl Feaster, Claude Feaster, Floyd McRae and Williams Edwards.
© 1954 (Renewed) Unichappell Music Inc. (BMI) All rights reserved. Used by permission.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
Stranger In Paradise
Music & Lyrics by George Forrest and Robert Craig Wright
Published by Scheffel Music Corp.
Arranged by James Raitt
 
'TWUZ THA NITE B4 XMAS
Based on the poem TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS by Clement Wood
Music by Brad Ellis
 
Musical continuity throughout by David Snyder
 
In addition, Licensee agrees to include the following two notes in the program:
DEDICATION

Forever Plaid is dedicated to the "good guys"; to they guys who wheeled the projector carts for the AV club; to the guys who saved their allowance to give their parents a special night on the town for their anniversary; to the guys who carried an extra handkerchief; to the guys who never went beyond first base, and if they did, they didn't tell anyone. We Salute You!


From the Playwright...

For those of you who have never seen Forever Plaid, we've included notes from the original production - it's good back-story. For those of you who have seen PLAID, I sincerely want to take this opportunity to say, "Thank you for coming back and sharing your very precious time with us."

For over a decade, I resisted creating a holiday sequel based on FOREVER PLAID. I was stubborn about it. Sequels are for movies like-- RAMBO, LORD OF THE RINGS, HOME ALONE, LEGALLY BLONDE, INDIANA JONES, HARRY POTTER etc. I tried to explain this when I was approached to create a 'follow up to FP. (Can you imagine-PLAID ALONE TWO, LEGALLY PLAID, SPARKY POTTER AND THE CUMMERBUND OF FIRE, THE LORD OF THE PLAIDS, INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF PLAID???. )

However, right after 9/11, I was approached by the PASADENA PLAYHOUSE to create a Holiday edition of PLAID. It was at a time when we all needed a little joy and a little cozy Holiday fun to lift spirits. FOREVER PLAID has been embraced by many wonderful communities, so I attempted to create a little Holiday Party of Plaid for the Playhouse. After the first year of the show, various other theatres asked if they could do PLAID TIDINGS. Over the past few years the show has evolved to what you are going to experience tonight ( or this Afternoon).

Each year brings its share of joys and tribulations for the world, our country and our loved ones. Here's hoping a little toasty, cozy, musical, holiday cheer will put you in the mood to appreciate all the good stuff that is always around us.
The videotaping or other video or audio recording of this production is strictly prohibited.
Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings

Included Materials

ItemQuantity Included
ERRATA LIST1
LIBRETTO/VOCAL BOOK8
PIANO CONDUCTOR'S SCORE2
VIDEO CONVERSATIONPIECE1

Production Resources

Resource
HOW DOES THE SHOW GO ON-10/CS
HOW DOES THE SHOW GO ON?
LOGO PACK
LOGO PACK DIGITAL
PRODUCTIONPRO
TRANSPOSITIONS-ON-DEMAND

STANDARD ORCHESTRATION

InstrumentationDoubling
BASS
The legendary Plaids come back to Earth to spread yuletide joy with the greatest holiday hits of the ages.
Show Essentials
4
Roles
PG
Rated
2
Acts

Full Synopsis

Act One

With an "Opening Fanfare," the classic set for Forever Plaid is revealed. The soft glow of the moon illuminates four microphones covered with pale blue cloths. The Piano Player enters, bows and begins to play. Through the loudspeakers, the Voice Over recaps the Plaids' untimely demise. Their silhouettes cross the moon, then slide back down to Earth. The Plaids are returning!

With a crash of thunder, Sparky, Jinx, Smudge and Frankie enter from the back of the theatre. They carry candles and chant as they make their way onstage ("Deus Ex Plaid"). The Plaids are surprised to be back on Earth, but know that, as the celestial Guardians of Harmony, they must have been sent back on a very special mission – a mission so secret that they don't even know what it is. Undaunted, they decide to do what they do best: a show! They introduce themselves and the band, then begin ("Strangers in Paradise").

Thinking that their mission may be to bring selfless love back to the world, the Plaids launch into song ("Amor / Hallelujah"). The boys are confused. They ask the audience who remembers them from their last concert. Noticing some new faces in the audience, they give a rundown of their greatest hits ("Holiday for Plaids"). To boost their confidence, they decide to do things the "good ol' way" and take out toilet plungers to use as microphones for "Sh-Boom."

There is a clap of thunder, and the boys are overtaken with the Christmas spirit. They sing a wild medley of holiday hits ("A Psycho Christmas"). Overwhelmed by the frenzy, Jinx gets a nosebleed, and Frankie has an asthma attack. Sparky escorts them offstage, leaving Smudge alone. Smudge recalls the joy that he and the other Plaids felt, watching Christmas specials on TV as children. He reveals that one of the Plaid's greatest dreams was to have their own Holiday Special ("The Most Wonderful Time / Merry Christmas").

Sparky returns with Jinx and Frankie, and the four Plaids sing "Besame Mucho / Kiss of Fire," with Jinx singing lead. Jinx becomes tangled in his mic cord and almost rolls offstage. As the song comes to a close, Jinx is suddenly possessed by the spirit of Christmas. Unable to stop himself, he bursts into a hearty rendition of "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town." The Plaids believe that these thoughts of Christmas are distracting them from discovering the true reason that they have returned to Earth.

There is another clap of thunder, and a note from Rosemary Clooney drifts down from heaven. Rosie gives the boys a clue about their mission: They must "spread their mirth in this cool season" and bring "a festive song of celebration" and joy to the world. They misinterpret this and think that it has something to do with one of Rosie's famous hits ("Mambo Italiano").

Jinx gags, and another clue comes out of his mouth that encourages them to sing a song that helps people remember what's dear to them. They sing "Hey There." It doesn't work. A new clue leads the Plaids astray again ("Fever").

A cell phone rings in the audience, and Sparky answers it. It's Rosemary Clooney! She tells them to "rearrange the clues in a Jack Frost way." Suddenly, the boys get it. They sing to Rosie over the phone ("The Christmas Song"). When they finish, the stage has been decorated with mistletoe. They realize that they've been sent to fulfill the needs of the holiday season by putting on a holiday show. They sing another medley of Christmas and Chanukah classics, followed by a calypso number ("Holiday Catering Drill," "Christmas Calypso"). The Plaids work the audience, encouraging them to sing along. With a thunderclap, the Plaids send the audience out for Intermission.

Act Two

The set has been decorated with a few large ornaments. The Plaids wear new outfits: cherry red cardigans, pink button-down shirts, plaid ties and pants in dark green and black. They are excited to share their holiday spirit with the audience – Christmas, Chanukah, Ramadan, Kwanza – they love it all ("Holiday Talk." "Cool Yule".

The Piano Player needs his union break and leaves. Sparky, Jinx and Smudge leave to get him. While they're gone, Frankie tries to sing "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" a cappella, but can't get through it due to his nerves. He reveals that he's always been inspired by Rudolph... and a little terrified by Frosty the Snow Man.

There is yet another clap of thunder, followed by sheet music dropping from the sky. The other Plaids return. Frankie begins to sing what is on the page as a hip-hop bassline kicks in ("Twuz the Nite B4"). Frankie gets really "street" as his gets down, amazing the other Plaids. Together, they recount the Night Before Christmas story... "old skool."

The Piano Player is still missing. Sparky decides that he will play the piano while Smudge sings lead ("Let It Snow"). The Piano Player returns to play "Carol of the Bells." A woman from the audience is selected to help the Plaids play "Joy to the World" on the handbells, followed by "Mr. Santa," played to the tune of "Mr. Sandman." They give the audience member a prize package, and she returns to her seat.

Sparky tells a tale that he holds dear to his heart – the story of the Christmas Cardigan – about how the Plaids nearly came to sing backup for Perry Como and ended up with his Christmas Cardigan ("Mambo in a Winter Wonderland," "Swell Backups"). Using a video of Perry Como singing "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas," the Plaids fulfill their dream of singing backup for Mr. Como.

Next, the Plaids do a condensed version of "The Ed Sullivan Christmas Show" ("Ed Sullivan / I'll Be Home for Christmas"). An Usher appears from the audience with a package for the Plaids. Inside are Santa Hats and a TV Holiday Special model set. Snow begins to fall, and the Plaids realize that their dream is coming true... they're going live for their own TV Holiday Special ("Finale, Part I: Merry Christmas / The Wassail Song," "Finale, Part II: Home for the Holidays," "Finale, Part III: Jingle Bells")!

The Plaids wish that they could stay but they have fulfilled their mission and must return to heaven. They say goodbye and perform one more number ("Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas"). The lights fade as we see the Plaids' silhouettes fly across the moon.

Casting

Casting

Cast Size: Small (Up to 10 performers)
Cast Type: Ensemble Cast
Dance Requirements: Standard

Character Breakdown

Francis
The leader and caretaker of the group. Confident. Asthmatic. He has a great deal of compassion for the music and the group. Romantic crooner and spiritual singer.
Gender: male
Age: 20 to 40
Vocal range top: B5
Vocal range bottom: F3
Sparky
The clown of the group, who is shown to have a heart. Very sharp and loves singing his tailor-made solos. Wears a retainer and has a slight speech impediment. Energetic and clever.
Gender: male
Age: 20 to 40
Vocal range top: G5
Vocal range bottom: F3
Jinx
The shy one. He lives his life terrified and doesn't always remember what song comes next. Sparky's step-brother, he occasionally gets a nosebleed when he sings above an A.
Gender: male
Age: 20 to 40
Vocal range top: D6
Vocal range bottom: F3
Smudge
The worrier. He worries about the props, the running order, and always assumes the audience won't like him. Has chronic nervous stomach and is oddly reluctant to perform. Wears glasses, which hides his good looks and sex appeal.
Gender: male
Age: 20 to 40
Vocal range top: G5
Vocal range bottom: F3

Show History

Inspiration


Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings is a sequel to the original Forever Plaid. Plaid Tidings is a holiday version with modified story and songs.

Stuart Ross wrote Forever Plaid as an homage to the close-harmony "guy groups" of the 1950s, like The Four Aces and The Four Freshmen. Ross also included four-part arrangements of famous solo songs from the '50s, such as "Chain Gang," "Sixteen Tons" and an entire medley dedicated to songs by Perry Como. He got the idea to kill his characters from a cabaret in Rochester, and having the show running in repertory with Nunsense generated the plot point of the busload of Catholic girls as a cause of death. When the musical was in its initial stages, however, producers urged him not to make the Plaids dead, although Ross brought back the gimmick when the show moved to New York.

 Ross never intended for the show to be a nostalgic jukebox revue. Instead, he created the Plaids – a representation of the clean-cut mentality of the '50s – to show what would happen if people of that sensibility came into a modern-day world. He purposely fleshed out the four Plaids to give each character a personality and, ultimately, demonstrate to them what a wonderful life they had without stardom.

Productions


Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings premiered at the Pasadena Playhouse on November 11, 2001.

Subsequent productions played to great success, including at the Neptune Theatre in Halifax, Nova Scotia (known for its productions of the original Forever Plaid), and the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego. The 2010 San Diego cast featured Michael Winther, Leo Daignault, Jason Heil and David Brannen.

Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings has been produced regionally by a variety of theatres and is often done annually in the places where it has become an audience favorite, such as at the New Village Arts Theatre in Carlsbad, CA.

Cultural Influence

  • Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings has become a recurring holiday favorite across the country, with many theatres doing the show annually.
  • A cast recording called Holiday in Plaid was released in 2003. It featured Tony Award winner, Faith Prince. It was produced by Bill Meade, with musical direction by David Snyder and original vocal concept by James Raitt, cousin of Bonnie.

Trivia


  • In addition to Plaid Tidings, the Forever Plaid franchise has another sequel, The Sound of Plaid: The New Glee Club Version of Forver Plaid. There was also a movie version of Forever Plaid that was released in 2009.
  • In a program note written for the 2013 New Village Arts Theatre production, Forever Plaid creator, Stuart Ross, says that he resisted making a holiday sequel to Forever Plaid for quite some time, despite pressure to do so based on the original's popularity. However, because of 9/11, he finally gave in and wrote Plaid Tidings.

Critical Reaction

"When the shows [Forever Plaid and Plaid Tidings] are sincerely played, as Plaid Tidings is at [New Village Arts], they strike more chords than mere aural harmony can achieve."
– San Diego Downtown News

"As long as Forever Plaid are singing, it s first-rate holiday entertainment, particularly for those in the audience old enough to remember the 1950s."
– Stage Scene LA

"Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings arrives as an unexpectedly charming and inviting holiday tale."
– The Oakland Press, Detroit, MI

"But here's a show that you, the (mature) kids and Grandma will all enjoy, though probably in different ways, without needing to brush your teeth afterward. Never have dead men worn plaid more brilliantly."
– Pittsburgh Post-Gazette