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The Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire is presenting “Elf,” a new musical fresh from Broadway, for the 2015 holiday season.  

Based on the hit film (now nearly a classic) with Will Ferrell and Zooey Deschanel, “Elf” follows the adventures of Buddy, a human-sized elf just hoping to spread cheer throughout the year.

Jeff Award winner and Evanston resident Alex Goodrich plays Buddy in Marriott’s production, and is ecstatic- almost beaming with energy- just like his character. Goodrich spoke with Evanston Now about the experience.

How are you shaping your performance, given the audience’s likely familiarity with the film version of Will Ferrell’s Buddy?

 I love the movie so much, and there are lines that I know people will be expecting. But I’ve tried to make Buddy my own as much as possible. The musical isn’t a carbon copy of the movie, it’s fleshed out and has some really moving parts so it kind of requires Buddy to be a little different. Also, there is only one Will Ferrell. I mean, come on.

What’s your favorite song in the show, and why?

My favorite one to perform is “Just Like Him”. It’s when Walter takes Buddy to work with him. For a fish out of water story that moment is when Buddy is the most “out of water”! It’s fun to goof around with the other people in the office and with the audience! It’s a blast!

“Elf” is said to be “plenty smart for adults” in a review. What makes the show smart, what are the inside jokes and puns and what-nots for adults?

Well, it has a really grown up sense of humor in as much as it takes place in a cynical New York.  Buddy appeals to kids because he is one of them at heart, but the adults will appreciate the jaded New Yorkers being won over by his Christmas spirit! The second act begins with a number involving 10 angry retail store Santas complaining. It’s very funny for adults!

What does this holiday production bring to the stage that is unique and exciting?

It is a new holiday show! There are plenty of “Christmas Carols” and “It’s a Wonderful Life’s” out there. This show actually has less to do about it being Christmas and more about embracing Buddy’s positive optimistic outlook all year round! Plus we have the real Santa.

What’s your favorite holiday tradition?

My siblings and I always wake my parents up ridiculously early on Christmas morning. Like 4:30 or 5:00am. Still. We are all grown and some are married with kids and live far away and we still, wake them up, call the house, Skype in, whatever, STUPIDLY early. And Christmas is done by 6:30. Then breakfast and a nap!

To reserve tickets, call the box office at 847-634-0200 or visit MarriottTheatre.com.

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