Closed 2h 15m
ELF The Musical
Midtown W
77

ELF The Musical NYC Reviews and Tickets

77%
(144 Reviews)
Positive
81%
Mixed
15%
Negative
4%
Members say
Funny, Entertaining, Delightful, Quirky, Clever

About the Show

This holiday musical inspired by the beloved 2003 film returns to the Theater at Madison Square Garden for a seasonal run.

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Member Reviews (144)

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66
Cliched, Fluffy, Great singing

See it if You are a fan of the story or enjoy Christmas themes with traditional characters and childish humor.

Don't see it if You prefer more original productions with less childish themes and interesting characters.

85
Delightful, Funny, Entertaining

See it if you're a Christmas fan and love the movie. This musical version isn't simply cut-and-paste with the songs "shoved in".

Don't see it if you're a grump and don't want to deal with kids in the audience.

Critic Reviews (24)

Z
December 18th, 2017

"'Elf the Musical' is your answer to reveling and rediscovering the Christmas spirit for you and your loved ones...Original songs will fill you with the Christmas spirit and have you humming the songs long after the show is over...Gratton's portrayal of the lovable elf captures an innocence and goofiness that is endearing, with the supporting cast rising to the occasion as well...New and old fans of the classic holiday story will enjoy this musical adaptation."
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December 14th, 2017

“One of the main themes of 'Elf' is the importance of bringing the Christmas spirit back to a downtrodden, overworked and gloomy population of Americans that we call typical New Yorkers. Well, it does as exactly what it says on the tin, as they say...The upside - and this really knocked my bell-jingling socks off – is the enormous sound system that amplifies the live 16-piece orchestra...Hearing a Broadway score played out so richly at those increased volumes was quite spectacular.”
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December 18th, 2015
For a previous production

"'Elf' seemed a little lost onstage, its sets flimsy, its good cheer not quite infectious. In Eric Petersen, it can claim a particularly spirited and winning Buddy…There is generally fine work from everyone else, even the elf chorus, whose members must perform several numbers on their knees...The children in the audience seemed most delighted by a number that climaxed in confetti cannonry."
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December 19th, 2013
For a previous production

"Director Sam Scalamoni’s production, with a lot of flat scenery by Christine Peters, is visually chintzy in its renderings of North Pole workshops and Manhattan skylines. It’s hard to describe the performances when the enterprise is so cartoonish; the actors all seem capable, yet they rarely get an opportunity to display much personal appeal...The show might not want to be anything more than a big silly toy, but it doesn’t spin. It’s wound too tight."
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November 27th, 2013
For a previous production

"'Elf' is not reinventing the form of the Broadway musical, nor does it have the earthy charm of 'A Christmas Story'...This is not a show that will return you and your brood to a purer holiday era...But if you're looking for a big, glitzy, feel-good downtown show that is a good time, requires no cognitive investment whatsoever, has quite a few decent tunes and comes replete with broad appeal for everyone from 6-year-olds to seniors, 'Elf' likely will exceed your expectations too."
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December 22nd, 2015
For a previous production

"The book culls the best lines from the movie while also smartly managing to distinguish it as its own entity...The actors have the unenviable task of playing to the massive venue, which, in both look and feel, registers as more of an airplane hanger than the ideal spot for mounting musicals. Yet they do it with assurance, delivering unique and charming performances that, like the material itself, aren't carbon copies of their screen predecessors."
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December 22nd, 2015
For a previous production

"The creative talents behind the show have got some serious musical theatre chops...Their upbeat, oddball and tuneful concoction has a contemporary attitude that's light on the seasonal sentiment, but heavy on the showbiz fun...This production would be better suited for a smaller venue in a city where there's less competition from slicker holiday entertainments."
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December 23rd, 2013
For a previous production

"It's bright, it's tinkly, it has snow, it has a curmudgeon who gets his heart warmed, it has hustle and bustle, and Santa. In other words, the creators threw in every Christmas trope they could into the two and a half hour running time...They also keep the character development to a minimum, providing types rather than full-blown characters. The short-hand works, if only because of the simplistic nature of the piece - think a Muppet special, but with people."
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November 26th, 2013
For a previous production

"The musical mostly avoids disappointment, travelling in the range between benign and fairly charming...Where Ferrell was all deadpan innocence and incredulousness as Buddy, Blum's characterization is more Chris Kattan: He's the Spirit of Christmas Spazzy...The show as a whole doesn't creep far above nice, really, but that's far preferable to naughty."
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November 27th, 2013
For a previous production

"The stage version, that is now on the stage at The Cadillac Palace Theatre, as part of the Broadway In Chicago season, is a festive and cute holiday entertainment, and although the star, Will Blum is very close to Ferrell, the musical version falls a little flat... I found this show to appear as one might see in a Community Theater. Our local Community Theater would never touch this show, but if they did, it would far surpass what is on the stage at The Cadillac Palace."
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December 1st, 2013
For a previous production

"Certainly you hope a family show like this one will deliver a transformative experience for young theater-goers. This touring production of the musicalization of the 2003 feature film tries hard to do that, with a colorful, large scale production and a very solid cast – but while it gets off the ground and flies, it never really soars. Not in the way a feel-good family holiday story ought to, and there are many, many role models out there to serve as a guide to accomplish just that."
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November 29th, 2013
For a previous production

"Although Blum delivers spritely spirit in song and dance, he can’t quite match Ferrell’s dazzling performance...The visual is candy coated cute. This show has strong principals...'Elf the Musical' is a fun way to get in the holiday mood. The elfin magic still charms even sans Ferrell."
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W
December 25th, 2013
For a previous production

"Being a fan of the film, but not wanting to just see a stage production mirroring the same thing I can see on DVD, I was pleasantly satisfied that 'Elf' was able to keep the integrity of the plot, characters, and humor while, at the same time, giving each of those elements a fresh lift...By combining good music with loveable characters, a fun story, and a ton of holiday spirit, 'Elf' is certainly worthy of becoming an annual family holiday tradition."
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December 12th, 2013
For a previous production

"'Elf the Musical' is a funny fresh, treat for the holidays...The colorful sets and costumes were very visually appealing and the pace and plot of the show progressed very well. It is a unique show, and though you might think it is aimed at children because of the title, logo and look of the show, but I think the satiric humor caters best to teens and adults."
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W
December 20th, 2013
For a previous production

"Will Blum is an energetic and capable performer, so it’s hard to put a finger on exactly why he’s a poor fit for the title character of 'Elf the Musical.' The chief issue: Instead of emphasizing the innocent, childlike nature of a 28-year-old who thinks Santa is real, Blum occasionally inches towards the creepy...'Elf’s' frequently two-dimensional, gaudy sets from Christine Peters lend an amateur feel to some of the show’s scenes."
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December 21st, 2013
For a previous production

"Meehan and Martin add their own comedic genius, creating a show that is funny and fun for the entire family. The writers succeed because they understand how to relate to today’s audience...Of course what really sets this show apart from the movie is that this is a musical...Thanks to the funny book, the energetic cast, and the bright and cheery costumes and sets, 'Elf The Musical' is like a tasty sugar cookie with lots of colorful sprinkles on top."
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December 23rd, 2013
For a previous production

"'Elf The Musical' isn’t likely to become a Christmas tradition for everyone. The musical numbers are polished and pretty, but not particularly memorable... Buddy’s infectious spirit at the front of the show turns grating as his romp across New York carries on...All told, 'Elf The Musical' is a great piece of theater to share with the little ones around Christmas. But, if you have a touch of the Grinch already, you may want to steel yourself with an eggnog or two before coming out."
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December 21st, 2013
For a previous production

"The stage musical version, directed with a high dosage of energy by Sam Scalamoni, has much of the film’s charm and is geared more heavily toward families by playing up the holiday themes and opting for more family friendly humor...The show features a sugary sweet score of holiday-sounding ditties by Tony nominees Matthew Sklar and Chad Beguelin that start off a bit bland but steadily improve as the show moves along."
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F
December 26th, 2013
For a previous production

"If you feel like you didn’t get enough Christmas, you need not look any further than this high-energy show that’s running through early January. It’s so full of holiday cheer, it’s coming out its elven ears... A couple jokes seem to fall flat, barely eliciting a chuckle...But there more than plenty to laugh about...'Elf The Musical' is certainly a holiday treat. It just needs to cut back on the sugar."
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November 30th, 2013
For a previous production

"Thankfully, the material is strong enough to stand on its own as a musical without its associated lead touring the country...Director Sam Scalamoni strikes a nice balance between the fantasy of the piece and the reality of a family being slowly ripped apart. Choreographer Connor Gallagher creates some clever original dances for the height challenged elf’s as well a beautiful ice skating sequence."
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November 28th, 2013
For a previous production

"What I do wish was that this musical possessed just a little more silly. Don’t get me wrong, there are some good laughs here. But too much of the play feels like a reshaping of a comedy into a musical...'Elf' is recommended for families this Christmas season. I am not sure couples without kids will enjoy this as much, but if you are looking for a family friendly musical this is the one to go to."
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December 1st, 2013
For a previous production

"A high-octane song-and-dance version of the story of Buddy the Elf that has plenty to keep all ages entertained, from small children to seniors. Lacking the wryness and special effects of the film, this musical version nonetheless boasts a witty book which does develop, update and smooth over plot details that compress the story in a more genre-friendly way for the stage."
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November 29th, 2013
For a previous production

"This is not a perfect translation to stage of the sweet and charming movie that became a holiday classic...You do smile — even as you tamp down the feeling that this movie-to-stage musical was a blatant commercial attempt to cash in on the popularity of Ferrell's wildly popular performance...Still, this is a talented cast."
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O
December 22nd, 2013
For a previous production

"The pacing can be frantic at times, but kids will enjoy 'Elf the Musical's' peppy, upbeat musical numbers. There is plenty of (funny) adult humor that will probably go over the heads of youngsters under a certain age. My only complaint with the musical is that leaves out one of my favorite scenes from the movie."
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