When it comes to Christmas, sometimes it’s the memories that set the tone for the holiday spirit.
Apropos of this is Tim Tamashiro’s show, Timmy’s Happy Christmas 1974, and it’s coming at just the right time; Thursday, Dec. 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the Jeanne and Peter Lougheed Performing Arts Centre. It’s the perfect event coming to Camrose.
In talking with Tamashiro, the inspiration behind this performance came from his years as a professional singer, and broadcaster on CBC. “I have the unique position of being able to see how important the spaces between songs are,” explains Tamashiro.
He adds that Vinyl Café on CBC was another inspiration for his show, basically bringing stories to life in between songs with a nostalgic twist on Christmas in the 1970s. We take this journey with Tamashiro, as an eight-year-old boy, and journey into the world of Christmas music and those hilarious and sometimes crazy Christmas commercials and toys from back in the day.
The Sears Christmas Wish Book is one of those memories.
“It was the most important document of the year for kids,” says Tamashiro. “We would pick it up very often and with a crayon would start circling things, or you know, make hints to mom and dad about what we want in the catalogue.”
It wasn’t just about the decorations and clothing and toys; Tamashiro jokes he even used to take a peak at the bra section.
“The experience is very universal throughout North America,” says Tamashiro.
It’s not just the Sears Wish Book. It’s also about the crazy commercials kids would see on TV as well as the old Christmas shows that would pop up, all of which are highlighted in his performance.
Tamashiro fondly recalls shows such as How the Grinch Stole Christmas and Charlie Brown Christmas. Those were good days for an eight-year-old kid. “It was a very welcome time of the year that just brought so many lovely feelings.”
It is a feeling that kids of all ages can look back at fondly. From watching commercials or looking through the wish book, to preparing for the big day and taking in all the classic Christmas shows. Fans feel the exact same way.
“You know, I’ve seen grown men stand up in the middle of the show and point to the screen and go, ‘I wanted one of those as a kid!’” he explains. “They stand up and applaud, getting so excited, and that’s the type of experience that I love to share with audiences.”
“It’s like a time machine, where we can just transfer people back to being children again.”
Seeing this kind of excitement from attendees is one of the reasons Tamashiro loves what he does so much. “There’s a moment in the show where I get everybody in the audience to sing with me and it’s not just a Christmas carol, but it’s a part of a Charlie Brown Christmas.”
There’s such a strong feeling of nostalgia and folks love to participate during Tamashiro’s performance.
“Every time I hear the audience sing along like that, it’s really cool,” he explains.
“This is what I love to do more than anything, is to share really special, joyful moments with people so that not only are they in the moment, they get this feeling of joy and nostalgia.”
Timmy’s Happy Christmas 1974 is a family show for all ages.