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Waiting for that holiday spirit to kick in? Well, look no further than the new single by Edmund Bagnell, an immensely talented violinist and vocalist who's performed with Broadway legends such as Patti LuPone, Kristin Chenoweth, and Audra McDonald -- and has even performed at the Vatican. "Wrapped Up in Your Love," which releases tomorrow, December 2, is an original holiday song "inspired by the classics but with a contemporary feel." He says he wanted to write a Christmas love song that made him smile.
"I love the holidays!" declares Bagnell. "It's my favorite time of year. I love the traditions, the food, and especially the music. I released a Christmas album, Christmas at Home, a couple of years ago and enjoyed the process of recording it so much. I'd been itching to write my own holiday song ever since releasing that album, and the timing was right this year. I love that holiday music is evergreen, and people return to the same songs year after year, and my hope was to write a song that could become a part of that tradition."
Bagnell is known for being a member of the chart-topping, all-gay string quartet Well-Strung. His first big break came when he was cast as Tobias during his senior year at NYU in the first national tour of John Doyle's Tony-winning revival of Sweeney Todd (opposite Tony-winner Judy Kaye). Bagnell has also performed live for of Hillary Clinton and former President Barack Obama.
"There's a certain level of nerves for any performance, but major nerves can be really unpredictable for me -- and not necessarily at the times I might predict," he says of performing for such important dignitaries. "But when nerves really hit me, I try to focus on the work and things I can actively concentrate on to perform well, as opposed to who's in the audience. One teacher of mine growing up referred to performing as going into battle, and she was so right. The first time I performed live on the Today Show I thought I might have a heart attack, but focusing on the technical aspects kept me somewhat grounded. And practice, practice, practice really comes in hand in situations where it's easy to get flustered."
In addition to the single, Bagnell will also be putting on a new holiday show called Home for the Holidays. For the first time, he will be touring live with selections from his 2020 album, Christmas at Home, as well as some holiday classics like "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," "Oh Holy Night," and "Feliz Navidad." The show will also include A Christmas Carol (told through the music of Cher!) and a nostalgic Christmas movie soundtrack medley, along with a few other surprises. The Home for the Holidays concerts will take plave December 12 at NYC's Birdland Jazz theater and on December 15 at Davenport's Piano Bar & Cabaret in Chicago. He'll also be performing December 4 at the Blue Moon in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.
The Advocate is excited to premiere the whimsical stop-animation video for "Wrapped Up in Your Love," shown below. Bagnell says he was inspired by the Christmas specials of his youth. "I love those classic holiday movies such as Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer that used Burl Ives as a stop motion snowman, and I wanted to reference that visual language. There's something larger than life and even nostalgic about stop motion, and I think it's a perfect fit for the holidays."