The Christmas Revels

A Homegrown Revels

This year’s Christmas Revels is set in our nation’s capital and the surrounding countryside in 1870 – a time of hope after a period of struggle. As the nights grow longer and the air chills, neighbors gather to reflect on the past and to revel together once again.

After these many months apart, Washington Revels invites you to ring in the holidays with traditional melodies, heartfelt spirituals, joyful carols and toe-tapping rhythms in a Christmas Revels featuring local artists, the Washington Revels Brass and the Washington Revels Jubilee Voices. With stories, music and traditions that bring us closer, we will celebrate the Winter Solstice in a uniquely American way!

The 2021 Christmas Revels will be staged at the historic Spanish Ballroom at Glen Echo Park in Glen Echo, MD. Performances will be held over December 11-12 and 17-19 (times TBA). Bookmark this page and check back for updates as more details about The Christmas Revels are released in the weeks ahead.

Learn More!

Planning is still in motion for this December’s Christmas Revels. While you wait for final details, we encourage you to read our Frequently Asked Questions page at the button below:


Get Involved: Volunteer!

  • Chorus auditions were held over Sept. 17-19. However besides our volunteer choruses, there will also be non-performance volunteer opportunities for The Christmas Revels. Learn more at our FAQs page.

Support Revels Online

Make a Donation

You can make a one-time donation or set your recurring gift at the button above.

Give by Phone

Call the Revels office with your credit
card information at 301-587-3835

Give by Check

Send a check payable to “Washington Revels” to:
Washington Revels, Inc.
PO Box 665
Glen Echo, MD 20812

Donate Stock

Make a donation of stock or other securities by calling the office for instructions

Washington Revels is a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation, so donations are tax-deductible to the full extent permitted by law.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Every year, we get asked many excellent questions about The Christmas Revels. And this year, as we return from pandemic lockdowns towards in-person events, we expect that you will have many more. We’ve tried to anticipate and answer the ones we could think of here. If you have a question that isn’t answered below, or if you would like clarification on any of these FAQs, please send an email to info@revelsdc.org. We will continue to update this page as we finalize decisions, learn more, and receive new questions. [Updated September 20, 2021]

Watching the Show:

  1. Will the 2021 Christmas Revels be live and in-person? Yes, there will be a live in-person production this year.
  2. Where will The Christmas Revels be staged this year? The Christmas Revels will be staged at the historic Spanish Ballroom at Glen Echo Park in Glen Echo, MD. More info about this year’s performance location is coming soon!
  3. When are the 2021 performances? This year’s performances will take place over December 11-12 and 17-19. Performance times will be announced soon.
  4. When will tickets go on sale? The start of ticket sales is still under consideration. Tickets will go on sale no later than November 1st, and possibly earlier. Tickets will be available online.
  5. Will there be a virtual viewing option? Yes, the 2021 Christmas Revels will be filmed and released for viewing (release date TBD). We expect that the virtual ticket option will go on sale at the same time as in-person tickets.
  6. What is the 2021 show theme? This year’s Christmas Revels is set in our nation’s capital and the surrounding countryside in 1870 – a time of hope after a period of struggle. As the nights grow longer and the air chills, neighbors gather to reflect on the past and to revel together once again. Washington Revels invites you to ring in the holidays with traditional melodies, heartfelt spirituals, joyful carols and toe-tapping rhythms in a Christmas Revels that features local artists, the Washington Revels Brass and the Washington Revels Jubilee Voices. With stories, music and traditions that bring us closer, we will celebrate the Winter Solstice in a uniquely American way!
  7. I am a Washington Revels donor. Will I get my usual “Early Priority” ticketing benefit? Donors who give $100 or more between October 1, 2020 and September 22, 2021 will receive Early Priority ticketing benefits. Exact benefits will be announced to qualifying donors in advance of public ticket sales.
  8. Is there a vaccination policy for the audience? We are monitoring developments in the pandemic and changing health guidance as we evaluate audience safety measures. We currently follow Montgomery County and CDC guidelines. All policies to protect the health and safety of our performers, volunteers, audience, and staff are subject to modification as circumstances evolve.
  9. Will there be the usual audience singalongs and audience dancing during “Lord of the Dance”? We have not made decisions about audience singalongs or other forms of audience-cast interaction. We will make final determinations on these traditional Christmas Revels elements as more information on health and safety becomes available.

Participating in the Show:

  1. Who can participate in this year’s cast? This year our show features an Adult Chorus (18 & older) and a Teen/Tween Chorus (age 12 or older and entering Grades 7-12).
  2. Will there be a Children’s Chorus? We are still evaluating activities by children (under 12) this Fall and will release more information as we learn more about vaccinations for children (see more vaccination requirements below).
  3. When & where will Chorus Auditions be held? Auditions were held at Glen Echo Park in Glen Echo, MD. Adult Chorus took place on Friday, September 17 and Saturday, September 18. Auditions for the Teen/Tween Chorus were on Sunday, September 19.
  4. When & where will rehearsals be held? Weekly rehearsals will be held on Wednesday nights beginning September 22 through early December, with some additional weekend rehearsals. Rehearsals will be held in the Spanish Ballroom at Glen Echo Park.
  5. What is the vaccination policy for performers? Per Washington Revels’ Vaccination Policy: “Anyone performing, rehearsing, or otherwise gathering as a Washington Revels performer for a Washington Revels event must be fully vaccinated for Covid 19. This applies to any gatherings for singing together as organized by Washington Revels. Fully vaccinated means at least two weeks past the last required injection based on manufacturer’s recommendations.”
  6. What is the vaccination policy for non-performers? Per Washington Revels’ Vaccination Policy: “Non-performing volunteers who are not vaccinated will be permitted to participate in Washington Revels activities on a case-by-case basis. In all cases, these individuals will be required to be masked and distanced as appropriate.”
  7. When can I sign up for auditions? Audition signups are now closed.
  8. What opportunities will there be for non-chorus participants to volunteer? Volunteer opportunities will be announced after the venue is finalized and chorus auditions are complete. If you are interested in volunteering for The Christmas Revels, please email Community Stewardship & Volunteer Manager Grace VanderVeer.

Our flagship production, The Christmas Revels, is a festive, fully staged celebration of the Winter Solstice and the return of sun and light after the “shortest day,” radiating hope and joy in the renewal of life and the circle of the seasons. Seen by over 10,000 people every December, it draws on traditions and rituals from many lands and peoples, focusing each year on a different culture or related cultures.

Select a link below to learn more about that production.

 2011 Andalusian Production

2011-2020

 Photos from the Thomas Hardy Revels

2001-2010

 Photo from African-American Revels

1991-2000

  • 2000: Celtic
  • 1999: Celestial Fools
  • 1998: Shepherd Alley – Washington, D.C.
  • 1997: Medieval – King and the Fool
  • 1996: Northlands
  • 1995: French
  • 1994: Victorian
  • 1993: Celtic
  • 1992: Celestial Fools
  • 1991: Russian and American
 Photo from an early Washington Revels production

1983-1990

  • 1990: Medieval
  • 1989: Storybook
  • 1988: Medieval
  • 1987: Celtic
  • 1986: French
  • 1985: Appalachian-American (featuring Jean Ritchie)
  • 1984: “Haddon Hall”
  • 1983: Medieval

Glen Echo Park is a site owned by the National Park Service. Programs are produced in cooperation with the Glen Echo Park Partnership for Arts and Culture, the National Park Service, and Montgomery County.

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