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Ways to have a theater-themed party

Get dramatic with a Broadway bar mitzvah!

for The Brooklyn Paper

From “Chicago” to “Oklahoma” and all the way to the “South Pacific,” the love of Broadway shines past the Great White Way. If your little “Annie” can’t stop listening to her “Grease” soundtrack, and “Tommy” thinks he is one of the “Jersey Boys” (even if he really does live in Jersey), then a theater-themed bar mitzvah is the best way to spotlight your Broadway-baby’s big accomplishment. Follow these steps to make your party Rock the Ages!

Food

Create a “Wicked” menu that will make your friends and family shout “Mama Mia!” Start with hors d’evours as classy and glamorous as a Broadway stage. Hand everyone a glass of “The Color Purple” grape juice (and Manischewitz wine for the adults). Set out a delicious fondue with bread and veggies to dip called “Newsies” Cheese. You can also offer your guests mini Avenue Quiche and “Lion King” Prawns. If you are sticking with a kosher menu, try “Spamalot” Spam-free beef skewers. For your entree, serve individual chicken pot or shepard pies called Sweeny Todd’s meat pies or, for more discerning taste buds, try “Fantasticks’ ” Fish Sticks. As your desert, give your guests The King & ice cream along with a candy mix called Charity’s Sweets. With this menu, your dinner will surely be the Cat’s meow.

Decor

To decorate your party hall for your high-class “Company,” choose a specific Broadway look. If you want a glitzy, glamorous Broadway party, decorate with lights, mirrors, and red carpets to give your fete a “Gypsy” and “Phantom of the Opera” vibe. Or, if you prefer down-on-their-luck inspired musicals like “Rent,” “Les Miserable,” and “West Side Story,’ make your hall look desolate and impoverished — aka like a green room. Use old vintage tables and chairs that are aged and discolored and set lamps around the room for dim yet beautiful lighting. You can also decorate the room with eclectic objects, old wigs, and boas that look like old stage props and can double as props in a photo booth. Use playbills as menus and create centerpieces based on different musicals — for example your “Music Man” table can have a picture of your child playing a trumpet.

Entertainment

Get your guests out of their seats with the “Sound of Music.” Have your friends up and moving with a Corny Collins Show dance pageant. Hire a small Broadway-inspired orchestra, or if your budget does not allow it, get a “Fiddler on the Roof” — although for safety reasons, he should remain off of the roof. Have a short, romantic “Little Night Music” song or two so the men can dance with their Fair Ladies. You may also want to have a karaoke contest so your friends can belt out their favorite “Evita” songs. If you want to test your guests’ knowledge of everything Broadway, have a trivia contest. Play some of your most beloved musical numbers and have your partygoers guess the song and what show it is from. The winners can earn various prizes such as Broadway soundtracks, DVDs, or even a karaoke machine.

Favors

For a simple parting-gift, you can always give out “Mary Poppins” or a bag of fun snacks that everyone loves to pop in their mouth. If your kiddo enjoy singing and performing musical numbers, give your guests a gift they will remember for years — a CD of them singing their favorite Broadway song. This giveaway will make both the “Guys and Dolls” happy, as it is a precious and personal gift for everyone you love. You might also want to go so far as to give away a recorded compilation of multiple numbers so your guests can cherish your little star’s voice — and your party — more than just “Once.”

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