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Upcoming at the Jorgensen: For many, ‘Happiness is’ Kristin Chenoweth

It’s Thanksgiving Eve, and like many of us, the newly engaged, multi-talented superstar Kristin Chenoweth is looking forward to spending the upcoming holidays with her family and her fiancé’s family. 

But first, Chenoweth has a list of upcoming events that might rival Santa's. 

For the Tony and Emmy award winner, singer, actress, and writer, the number of talents she possesses seem only rivaled by Chenoweth’s unstoppable energy. 

This holiday season, she has many things to celebrate. In addition to her recent engagement to musician Josh Bryant, Chenoweth released her holiday/Christmas album, “Happiness is...Christmas!” on Oct. 22. 

On Saturday, Dec. 11, Chenoweth returns to Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts on the UConn campus in Storrs, CT, for an evening of good humor and personal reminiscences featuring music from her most recent album, "For the Girls," with some all-time holiday favorites sprinkled in.

"For the Girls," released in 2019, is a heartfelt tribute to the great female singers throughout history. 

“The holiday season is such a great time of our lives,” Chenoweth said. 

“I love Thanksgiving/ I think it means so much more now,” she said. 

In choosing the songs for her holiday album, one connection was easy. The album’s namesake song, “Happiness is…Christmas” is an homage to the Peanuts. Chenoweth won a Tony Award for playing Sally Brown in the musical, “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.”

The original lyrics in the song were reworked to make it a celebration of Christmas. 
“The Peanuts and Charlie Brown are such a part of my past, winning the Tony in 1999. That was an easy choice,” she said.

“I just thought — Happiness IS Christmas,” she said. 

Other songs on the album include a cover of “Merry Christmas, Darling,” by The Carpenters, “Merry Christmas, Baby,” a bluesy duet featuring Keb’ Mo’, and “My Dear Acquaintance,” a song by Peggy Lee.


 In particular, Chenoweth points out the lyrics to “My Dear Acquaintance” are relatable given what we have all gone through the last year. 

“It’s been a really tough time for all of us and after not having the holidays last year, the words ‘Raise your glass and we'll have a cheer,’ it is really time for us to celebrate. We’ve earned it,” she said. 

The show at the Jorgensen is a bit of a preview of Chenoweth’s one-night-only holiday concert at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City on Monday, December 13, at 8 p.m. Chenoweth said she definitely expects the audience to be in the mood for Christmas music at the Jorgensen. 

Chenoweth’s career spans film, television, voiceover and stage. In 2009, she received an Emmy Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her role in “Pushing Daisies.” In addition to her 1999 Tony, she was also nominated for her original role of Glinda the Good Witch in “Wicked” in 2004. Chenoweth has been nominated for two Emmy Awards and for a People’s Choice Award for her role as April Rhodes on “Glee.”
 
Chenoweth recently starred in the Netflix film “Holidate,” voiced the character Daisy in the HBO Max film “The Witches,” and hosted the Food Network competition series “Candy Land.” In Apple TV+’s musical comedy “Schmigadoon,” executive produced by Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video, she stars alongside Cecily Strong, Keegan-Michael Key and Ariana DeBose. Chenoweth will star in the STXfilms sports drama “National Champions.”

If that’s not enough, Chenoweth will also release her first picture book in March 2022. “What Will I Do with My Love Today?” is a sweet tale about a young girl named Kristi Dawn, who shares her love through acts of generosity around New York City. 

Chenoweth has also joined Kathy Najimy, Linda Perry, Chely Wright and Lauren Blitzer as an editor of “My Moment: 106 Women on Fighting for Themselves.” 

The collection, to be released in April, is is inspired by—but not limited to—the #MeToo movement and lets women from all walks of life describe a crucial point of adversity that propelled them into forward motion for good.

With so many projects and performances on the horizon, it seems the only thing that Chenoweth might not excel at is taking a break for herself.

“It’s always the conundrum with me. The biggest challenge. But I know if I don’t figure out a time to rest, I’m no good to anyone else,” she said.  
 
Chenoweth is a graduate of Oklahoma City University with a master’s degree in Opera Performance. She is an inductee into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame, as well as the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame.
 
Her Jorgensen performance begins at 8 pm. Doors open at 7 pm.
 
For additional information about the artist please visit https://www.officialkristinchenoweth.com
 
Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts is located at 2132 Hillside Road on the UConn campus in Storrs. Tickets for Kristin Chenoweth are now available online:  $35-$55, with some discounts available. For tickets and information, go to jorgensen.uconn.edu, or call the Box Office at