Metro Weekly

Editor’s Pick: A Magical Cirque Christmas at The National

Hosted by Lucy Darling, A Magical Cirque Christmas is a mix of comedy, music, and magic-filled holiday spectacle designed for all ages.

A Cirque Magical Christmas: Lucy Darling -- Photo: Christian Ashby
A Cirque Magical Christmas: Lucy Darling — Photo: Christian Ashby

One of relatively few women in the male-dominated world of magic, Carisa Hendrix is primarily a circus artist who holds two Guinness World Records for her skill and endurance as a fire eater — and who has been praised by David Copperfield as “a true original [and] exceptional new talent in magic.”

Yet Hendrix is also a Canadian comedian, actor, and entertainer, and increasingly showing off her skills across the board through her persona, Lucy Darling.

The character has been referred to as “part-Barbara Stanwyck, part-Lady Gaga, and part-Mad Men‘s Joan Holloway” — with a little Mae West thrown in for extra sauce.

Darling is the “Magical Hostess” in a new touring stage show promising an unusual blend of heartwarming music and holiday cheer with breathtaking and mind-blowing feats of derring-do and sleight of hand — a production offering aerial stunts one moment, a levitation trick the next, then a live rendition of a holiday classic, followed by a round of standup.

Initially developed and performed by Hendrix with several co-stars as an online holiday special during the pandemic, A Magical Cirque Christmas made the leap to live touring, courtesy production company MagicSpace Entertainment. “It’s amazing that a company like MagicSpace would let us make something so ambitious,” Hendrix told a writer for California’s Santa Barbara Independent.

A Cirque Magical Christmas: Oleksiy Alex Mruz
A Cirque Magical Christmas: Oleksiy Alex Mruz

A mix of comedy, music, and magic-filled holiday spectacle designed for all ages, the tale also jumps back and forth in time, stopping in different musical eras, “immersing [audiences] in the spirit of the season and performing Christmas classics through the decades.”

Directed by Louanne Madorma, the production features cirque artists who’ve performed on America’s Got Talent and The Late Show, including Rola Bola performer and unicyclist Jonathan Rinney, juggler Christopher Stoinev, and high-flying foot juggling duo of Ray Rodriguez Lara and Henry D’Boyd Collado Green.

Friday, Dec. 16, at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 17, at 2 and 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, Dec. 18, at 2 and 6:30 p.m. At the National Theatre, 1321 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. Tickets are $50 to $120. Visit or call 202-628-6161.

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