CONCERT PREVIEW: Ted Vigil presents ‘John Denver Christmas’ at Sellersville Theater

Ted Vigil is performing his John Denver Christmas show.
Ted Vigil is performing his John Denver Christmas show. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

IF YOU GO

What: “John Denver Christmas,” starring Ted Vigil.

When: 3 and 8 p.m. Dec. 2.

Where: Sellersville Theater 1894, 24 W. Temple Ave., Sellersville.

Tickets: $25 and $40.

Info.: (215) 257-5808, www.st94.com.

That portal to the 1970s is about to open again.

John Denver tribute specialist Ted Vigil typically draws a crowd when he’s in these parts. That’s why his special “John Denver Christmas” show has both a matinee and an evening performance Dec. 2 at Sellersville Theater.

It gives Vigil a chance to mix up his show with selections from Denver’s albums, “Rocky Mountain Christmas” and “Christmas, Like a Lullaby.” “I do the songs that (Denver) and (Denver’s ‘70s lead guitarist) Steve Weisberg did. Steve Weisberg wrote ‘Christmas for Cowboys’,” Vigil said, adding that the show will also feature the seasonal song “A Baby Just Like You,” “a couple traditional songs” and signature hits that fit the show’s theme, like “Back Home Again” and “Take Me Home, Country Roads.”

And for good measure, you’ll hear “Annie’s Song” and “Sunshine on My Shoulders.”

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“I do it as a tribute, not as a first person (impersonator),” said Vigil, who back in 2006 was a rock ‘n’ roll drummer and singer out to make connections in the music business when he arrived at a talent competition in Laughlin, Nev. That was where he got tagged with the nickname “Denver” because of his resemblance to the folk singer/songwriter that died in a plane crash in 1997. Vigil ended up winning the competition after being persuaded to performing a John Denver song.

“I met a sound engineer and a pilot that knew him. They said I should seriously do a tribute show, with my voice and my look. I really switched gears. Some of his music has a rock feel, some of his music has a pop feel. I went to Aspen (Colorado) and I met some of the people he worked with. I met his mother and I met his brother. I really got a feel for his inspiration and what he was about,” he said.

Perhaps Denver’s most enduring holiday recording is 1979’s “John Denver and the Muppets: A Christmas Together,” which does not get specifically referenced in Vigil’s show. At least, not yet.

“I really loved the Muppets when I grew up — they’re timeless. I thought about having Muppets on stage. I might look into that,” he said. “I actually did some puppeteering with different groups when I was younger.”

When asked if it ever gets weird for him being out in public, Vigil said that sometimes people ask to have their picture taken with him because they viewed Denver as a friend. “It has its moments. I get a feel for what it must be like ... to be Faith Hill and Tim McGraw when they go out to dinner. It doesn’t bother me. It shows me what (John Denver) means to these people,” he said.