It’s Christmas Eve, and the interstate in Virginia has closed due to major snowstorms. Frank, a brash billionaire businessman, and his secretary Kristine – who’s not the “sharpest bulb on the tree” – are forced to seek shelter in a highway rest area. They are soon joined by Tom, a hitchhiking wannabe country music singer, and Mary Beth, a young, very pregnant widow. Of course, Charlie, the rest area janitor, is stuck there even though he just wants to get home to dinner.
But this special night has much in store for all of them. Frank, who describes himself perfectly in his song, “Money-Making Machine,” is used to having his own way, but, as he speaks with Mary Beth, who mourns her late husband in “My Precious Earl,” and as he chats with Tom, who displays his musical talents in “Redneck Christmas,” something wonderful starts to happen. Frank reconnects with his younger, enthusiastic self and helps the other travelers find earthly solutions to their problems, while their shared feelings about the true meaning of Christmas help Frank connect to his spiritual self. Even Kristine shows her true grit by helping Mary Beth have her baby, aptly named Virginia. Beautiful songs “Weary Traveler” and “Five Golden Rings” add the perfect finishing touch.
This show is designed for simplicity. It’s one set with no special effects or costume changes. With echoes of It’s a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Carol, and the original Christmas story, this musical with 11 songs is uplifting, poignant and laugh out loud funny. You’ll leave the theatre filled with the true spirit of Christmas! About 95 minutes.
Cameron Kent Talks About his Musical
"Welcome to Virginia"
What inspired you to write this musical?
I love going to Christmas shows over the holidays because it always puts me in the Christmas spirit, but after a few years, I couldn’t find anything new and different, so I decided to create my own. I took what was in my heart about what I feel is the true meaning of the season and put it to words and music in a way that I felt was both entertaining and meaningful.
What's your favorite part or line in the musical? Why?
There’s a moment in the play where the cast talks about “anything can happen on a night like this.” That’s the heart and soul of the play… that people can change, grow, and heal old wounds on a magical night like Christmas Eve.
Where did the characters come from? Are they based on people you know?
All the characters are purely fictional, but I wanted them to be from as diverse backgrounds as possible so they each bring a unique perspective to the conversation. By forcing them to be together in a small space without any outside interruptions, they have a safe forum to share their true feelings, admit their fears and failures, and learn from each other. I think the common thread they find is the importance of family.
What did you try to achieve with this musical?
I wanted to write a play for small theatre companies that was easy to produce, but also funny, poignant, and contained memorable music. Above all, I wanted the play to carry a heartwarming message that makes people feel uplifted as they leave the theatre.
Do you have anything else you'd like to add?
I’m very proud that this play can be performed in front of any audience and any age group.