Best New Children's Choir Christmas Musical!
"My friend, man of many talents–in fact, true Renaissance Man–Darrell Bledsoe has invented and produced a delightful musical for children called Bethlehem or Bust! Somehow he has managed to harness the complementary talents of former Bob Hope writer Martha Bolton and arranger Ted Wilson, along with some crack songwriters, to produce a truly memorable work for Christmas.

"You will be enthralled as you follow the exploits of Ned, the Narcissistic Camel; Stone Bold the Bull; Stinky the Skunk and a host of others as they travel to compete in the Bethlehem version of something very "American Idol"-like, only to happen upon Someone they weren't expecting-and I don't mean Simon Cowell! Your kids (and their parents) will love this 'way cool' presentation of the Encounter that's still changing lives every day!"


Dave Williamson
The Worship-Leading Choir

www.worshipleadingchoir.com
"Don't Just Sing-Lead Worship..."
"I'm certain the kids who'll participate in this wonderful musical will be blessed for many years to come as well as a blessing to all who will come to see and hear the timeless message.

The creators are so gifted. It's well crafted…and just plain fun."


Michael Puryear
Harding Music Group/Final Four Music
"I had the pleasure to witness firsthand the premiere of the children’s Christmas musical Bethlehem or Bust! at Kempke Music Florida. It was so creative and fresh and will appeal to the children who present it, as well as those who hear and see it presented! One of the things that really impressed me was the fact that many of God’s creation (a camel, bumble bees, duck, a stone, flowers, etc.) were used to get the story of Jesus’ birth to the audience. There were plenty of laughs but the message was never in doubt. Any size choir can pull it off, but there are enough parts for a large choir! If you are looking for a children’s Christmas to do…this is it, because many can be involved and many will be blessed!"

Tim Timmons
Minister of Music
First Baptist Church
Rusk, Texas
"I want to highly recommend to you Bethlehem or Bust! by Martha Bolton, Andy Cundiff, Darrell Bledsoe and Ted Wilson. I have known Darrell for a number of years and anything he is involved with is a winner. This is a very creative telling of the Christmas story with familiar and catchy new songs; your children’s choirs will love presenting this musical; fun and a strong message."

Gary Rhodes, Dove Award-winning arranger
"We listened and wished we were kids again so that we could be in Bethlehem or Bust!. Thanks for sharing it with us."

Shannon Smith, Three Bridges
"A contest, a camel and the birth of a king:  what’s not to like? I think Bethlehem or Bust! is one of the most creative children’s works I have heard in a long time. This musical grabs the listener and entertains while giving the gospel message at the same time. This is no easy feat and it has been done extremely well in this program.  I heartily endorse and recommend it to any one."
 
Stephen Hill, Stephen Hill Ministries
"Bethlehem or Bust! is filled with lots of fun, energetic characters and songs. Lots of creative freedom for costumes and staging. I love the "Spider Sistahs" and everyone is sure to leave singing this new twist on a childhood classic, but the best news of all is that Bethlehem or Bust! clearly declares that Jesus is the "best of show" and "Bethlehem's Brightest Star." This musical should work well for multiple age groups (combined choirs). Darrell Bledsoe and his team have produced a musical worth checking out!!!"

Nancy Gordon, Nancy Gordon Music
"Bethlehem or Bust! is a delightful children's Christmas musical with traditional Christmas carols in clever two-part arrangements that include interesting vocal accompaniment patterns, above very propelling instrumental accompaniments. Delightful vocal repartee in the songs and spoken dialogue tell the story in brief sequences that would be easy for children to learn, while stretching their vocabularies to include the "Narcissistic Camel," the "Narcoleptic Shepherd," and the "Insomniac Sheep." A newer carol by one of the author/composers, Andy Cundiff, is "Mary/Mary, Did You Know?" with lovely acoustic guitar accompaniment. "Doxolorap" interweaves the Doxology with rap sections, expanding the compass of styles along with rock songs. "This LIttle Light of Mine" has a great jazz-style accompaniment lending a very professional touch to the overall composition. Recommended for pre-adolescent voices, churches with praise bands and youth choirs."

Ruth J. Holmes, Ph.D.
Professor of Music
Lubbock Christian University
"The musical is wonderful. I particularly love "The Itsy Bitsy Spider." I've been singing it with my grandson."

Dr. Vernon Whaley
Chairman, Department of Worship and Music Studies
Director, Center for Worship
Liberty University
"Bethlehem or Bust! made me smile, with its creativity and fun characters. This musical will be a delight to those that get to participate in it, and also to everyone who gets to watch it performed!"

Melodie Tunney
Singer, Songwriter, Worship Leader
"What do you get when you combine a cool duck, a stinky skunk and a narcissistic camel with dixieland, calypso, rap and swing music, some clever dialogue by a menagerie of blissful beasts and the Christmas story? The fun, new children's musical, Bethlehem or Bust!. A delightful alternative to the traditional Christmas pageant."

David Langford
Family Ministry
Quaker Ave. Church of Christ, Lubbock, TX
"A word to the alert Christmas program team: Do what I did, get your hands on a copy of Martha Bolton and team's crowd-pleasing and hugely inspiring kid's musical, Bethlehem or Bust!. We who produce church programs and musicals know our audiences and the talent we have to work with–so do they! On a first reading of Bethlehem or Bust!'s lyrics and dialogue, not to mention punching out the melodies on my old upright, I knew it was a show that will touch hearts as well as funny bones. Never will the story of those precious characters (real and imagined) who finally made it to Bethlehem ever be the same. As with all Bolton creations, you know it comes from a believer's heart. Well done, Martha, Andy, Darrell and Ted!"

Paul Miller
Writer, Director and long-time Drama Editor, Lillenas Publishing Company

"Bethlehem or Bust! is a delightful, fresh look at the birth of God into our world through a tiny baby. In a social climate that increasingly pushes back against the miracle of Jesus' birth, this new musical allows children the freedom to openly celebrte, laugh and sing of this glorious "impossibility"-Jesus' humble entrance into their lives. By using animals and competition, children are invited to be as creative as possible while taking a look at the ego-centered world view around them. Kudos to Martha Bolton and company for making available such a powerful, exuberant musical!."

Bonnie Keen
Author, Writer, Recording Artist, Actor

"Bethlehem or Bust! is fun, fast-paced and entertaining, and it tells the story of Christmas like no children's musical you've ever seen. The only thing that's missing is a long-running role for me, but I'm talking to my longtime friend Martha Bolton about adding one!

Mark Lowry
Entertainer, Songwriter, Comedian
"When you combine a creative team like the one who came together for Bethlehem or Bust!, the expectations are pretty high. The good news is that the project far galloped right past what I was expecting. It made me want to ride a horse, sing a carol and take home a CD.

Saddle up for the adventure! It's a ride you'll be glad you came along for."

Dave Clark
Songwriter, Director of Creative Development, Publishing and A&R, Lillenas Publishing Company
"With Bethlehem or Bust! Martha Bolton and team have managed to sneak past the dragons of boredom with a veritble zoo of lovable creatures…that sing! The resulting musical is filled with an unforgettable message of hope and truth that will touch people of all ages."

Ken Davis
Comedian, Author
"Bethlehem or Bust! demonstrates the genius collective experience of Bolton, Cundiff, Bledsoe and Wilson in a fresh, fun and innovative presentation. Its contemporary feel is sprinkled with new and familiar melodies, appealing to all ages, and embellished with an orchestration that will knock your socks off. Don't miss out on this experience, with a message to lift your spirits and move your hearts to focus on the baby Jesus."

Debra Johnson Clements
Producer, Singer
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