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Eleanor’s cast led by talented faces, both fresh and familiar

The sparkling new family-friendly holiday production, “Eleanor’s Very Merry Christmas Wish – The Musical,” is now having its world premiere at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, through December 29. Presented by Chicago-based DMT Entertainment, the 65-minute musical is an engaging tale of friendship, family, and the magic of the holiday season.

Sydney Swanson, a recent graduate of Plainfield North High School, is currently appearing in this holiday treat. In the musical, she plays one of the main characters Noelle, who has just moved to Chicago with her mom and wishes for a doll for Christmas. Sydney is no stranger to the stage having performed in a host of community productions over the years including “West Side Story, “ l Almost Maine,” and “Legally Blonde.”

IMG 1230“Eleanor’s Very Merry Christmas Wish – The Musical” is based on the heartfelt book of the same name by Chicago creative powerhouse Denise McGowan Tracy and tells the story of a rag doll named Eleanor who lives in a magical world. Despite her love for her North Pole family, including Santa, Mrs. “Cookie” Claus, Clara Claus, and the elves – Twinkle, Sprinkle, and Sparkle, Eleanor’s very merry Christmas wish is for a best friend and home of her own. Realizing that wishing is not enough, she writes a letter to Santa expressing her wish. The letter opens the door to answering many questions and to the journey which leads to her wish (and others) coming true.

“The Eleanor’s Very Merry Christmas Wish – The Musical” ensemble of 11 features faces both familiar from local stages and on the rise, including Rockford-based musical theater pro Samantha Bonzi in the title role of Eleanor, alongside singer/songwriter and actor Lindsey Jane Bullen; Chicago Kids Company member Cara Chumbley; Blank Theatre Company co-founder Claire Latourette; Drury Lane veteran Kim Green; local Emmy Award winner Scott Gryder; Jeff Award nominee John Marshall Jr.; Chicago singer, actor, and voice artist Erin Parker (member of Actor’s Equity); Lucille Lortel Award nominee Emily Rohm (member of Actor’s Equity); Sydney Swanson in her professional stage debut; and Chicago Shakespeare Theater regular David Turrentine (member of Actor’s Equity).

Single tickets are priced at $29.50, with family packs of four tickets available for $100, and are on-sale now at or by calling 773-40-GREEN. Group discounts also available, check ticket website.

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