Stream Through Jan. 1: Cleveland Play House Presents Uplifting Holiday Concert SONGS FROM THE FIRST NOEL by Jason Michael Webb and Lelund Durond Thompson

Cleveland Play House celebrates the holiday season with an uplifting musical concert, Songs FromThe First Noel, on Sunday, December 20, 2020 at 7:30 pm. This vibrant offering features pop, jazz and gospel music, as well as reimagined Christmas classics. With book, music and lyrics by Jason Michael Webb and Lelund Durond Thompson, this soulful inspirational production is co-directed by Lelund Durond Thompson and Steve H. Broadnax III. Viewing tickets are $10 per household and are available for purchase exclusively at

Special Tony Award recipient Jason Michael Webb with Lelund Durond Thompson at the Tony Honors cocktail party at Sofitel New York. Photo by Lia Chang

Cleveland Play House Artistic Director Laura Kepley states, “This holiday concert featuring songs from the musical The First Noel is a not-to-be-missed special event that will touch your heart and raise your spirits. The gorgeous music and extraordinarily talented cast embody all of the feelings that the holiday season can trigger. This production will give the gift of healing, hope and rejoicing.”

A poignant new musical, The First Noel tells the universal story of a family that must confront the grief of the past in order to reunite and celebrate the joy of the present. The virtual broadcast includes exclusive behind-the-scenes interviews with the creative team: Tony Award winner Jason Michael Webb, Case Western Reserve University/Cleveland Play House (CWRU/CPH) MFA Alum Lelund Durond Thompson, and celebrated regional theatre director Steve H. Broadnax III.

CWRU/CPH MFA grad Thompson appeared in the CPH productions of A Streetcar Named Desire, Well, and the 2014 New Ground Theatre Festival workshop of Joe.

Webb created musical arrangements for CPH’s 2018 production of Marie and Rosetta.

Broadnax directed CPH’s 2019 production of Pipeline and served as associate director of CPH’s 2018 production of Marie and Rosetta.

The First Noel received its world premiere at The Apollo Theater in NYC and was produced by The Classical Theatre of Harlem in 2015. It played the Apollo again in 2016 and has since been produced at theatres across the country. For additional information and to hear the cast recording produced by Thompson and Webb, please visit:

The virtual broadcast premiere of Songs From The First Noel will be on Sunday, December 20, 2020 at 7:30 pm ET and can be streamed via YouTube on a computer, laptop, tablet, or Smart TV. The production can be accessed on demand through Friday, January 1, 2021 at 11:59 PM ET. Viewing access is $10 per household. Patrons can purchase tickets at

The production includes musical performances by Angela Birchett, Ciara Cain, India Carney, Nia Caesar, Les Cleveland, Daniela Cobb, Jesse Corbin, Revel Day, Tina Fabrique, Ayana George, Chelton Gray, Kristen Grinage, Jennie Harney, Adam Hyndman, Lamont Hill Cassondra James, Ashley Ware Jenkins, Saivon Johnson, Alec Lehrman, Jonathan Linden, Aaron Marcellus, Benjamin Moore, Carlos Ricketts, Kenneth Robinson, Soara-Joye Ross, Jared Schonig, Anderlyn Smith, Teresa Stanley, Skye Dakota Turner, Tiffany Webb Stoney, Vicky Walters, and Helen White.

The broadcast premiere event of Songs From The First Noel will also serve as the CPH Annual Free Night of Theatre for the scholars, families, educators, and staff of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District community.

KeyBank is the Presenting Sponsor of the 2020-21 Theatre Season at Cleveland Play House.

Additional funding for Songs From The First Noel is provided by K&D, Kulas Foundation, LSC Service Corporation, Medical Mutual of Ohio, Zinner & Co, Janet Kramer, and Cathy Lincoln.

To learn more, visit:

Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman. She stars in and served as Executive Producer for the short independent films Hide and Seek, Balancing Act, Rom-Com Gone Wrong, Belongingness and When the World was Young. She is also the Executive Producer for The Cactus, The Language Lesson, The Writer and Cream and 2 Shugahs.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2020 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at

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