The Grinch is back in Richmond to make sure that people get it right this year – Christmas that is! He realizes that even after he visited Richmond in 2012 for the Christmas parade and to appear at Altria Theater, people are still celebrating the season, something he doesn’t favor.
“Apparently I didn’t do a good enough job the first time and Christmas came back,” he says. “The joy came back to Richmond. Everyone got excited about Christmas, and I have to nip it in the bud. Again!”
Interviewing the Grinch for his visit to Richmond to star in Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical at Altria Theater from December 12 to December 17 goes down as one of my most unusual interviews. Let’s just say, he had a lot to talk about, starting with his feelings about the Whos.
“They get so noisy, noisy, noisy, noisy,” he says. “It’s too much. Those Whos get so excited about presents. I am up 3,000 feet on Mt. Crumpet, and I can still hear them. It gives me a migraine. I don’t like the lights, the decorations, or the trees – and I don’t like the presents especially.”
The Grinch Visits Richmond, December 12 – 17
The Grinch understands how annoying he can be, but he doesn’t care. “I have termites in my smile you know. I’m going to make sure I take them all. There will be no presents,” he says.
The Grinch’s recognizable green coloring, which came about in 1966 when animation of the book was introduced, is similar to that of Kermit the Frog, a character that is beloved by all.
“I am sure Kermit loves sharing his greenness with me. What’s not to enjoy. I am quite the star,” the Grinch says.
The only person that has been able to have an effect on the Grinch is little Cindy Lou Who. “She is a cutie,” says the Grinch. “She made my heart grow three sizes. After I took the presents, Christmas still came. It made me realize that Christmas is not so much about the presents, but being together and celebrating the ones you love. Cindy still thought of me even after I took the presents.”
He admits that Cindy Lou Who helped him eventually see a different side of Christmas, but not at first. After he got back up the mountain with his sleigh and presents, he was excited to hear all the cries from Whoville.
“As it says in my autobiography, I heard sound, but it didn’t sound sad, it was merry,” the Grinch says. “I heard Cindy Lou Who. She was thinking of me. She still cares, somebody in the world still cares. I realized I have to give these presents back.”
Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical Opens Tuesday at Altria Theater
Even though he’s always had his dog Max with him, he confesses it can get lonely sometimes on Mt. Crumpet. But, he’s not alone in this thoughts. He believes everyone has a little Grinch in them, but they might be able to turn that round if they start connecting with people.
“There are some Whos out there that that don’t like Christmas, but most do,” he says. “[Being connected] helps people get in the holiday spirt. It reminds them of what Christmas really can be.”
The Grinch — not the most humble character in conversation or on stage — loves to throw around his celebrity status. “My fans follow me everywhere, all around the country,” he says. “The paparazzi follow me everywhere. They like to get photos with me.”
He’s having a blast doing the show — he loves to see himself dance and hear himself sing. “I like it when it’s about me. I quite like that a lot,” he says.
A creature of habit, the Grinch reverts to his old ways each year. He hopes to recruit some new Grinches who will take Christmas yet again, he says. “I would like them to go stop Christmas, take down Christmas decorations. Leave presents out so I can steal them.”
When he comes to his senses, something he does when he thinks of Cindy Lou Who, he remembers how his heart grew and realized Christmas isn’t just about presents. “You have to cherish one another,” he says. “You might now have people around so you should celebrate them.”
Unfortunately, that thought fades as quickly as it comes, he adds, getting back in that ever famous Grinch personality. “Everywhere I go, I see trees and lights. I see ornaments. It’s quite something,” he grunts. “I am trying to take down everything, one city at a time.”
See the Grinch in His Element at Altria Theater, December 12 – 17
Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical is the record-setting Broadway sensation which features the hit songs “You’re A Mean One Mr. Grinch” and “Welcome Christmas” from the original animated special. Max the Dog narrates as the mean and scheming Grinch, whose heart is “two sizes too small,” decides to steal Christmas away from the Holiday loving Whos. Magnificent sets and costumes inspired by Dr. Seuss’ original illustrations help transport audiences to the whimsical world of Whoville and helps remind us of the true meaning of the holiday season. Don’t miss what The New York Times calls “an extraordinary performance!”
Runtime is eighty-five minutes (no intermission) at Altria Theater, eight shows December 12 through 17. Recommend for ages five and up. For showtimes and tickets to Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical, visit Broadway in Richmond.