INSIDE THE PERIMETER: 'Christmas' comes early to the Fox

The Christmas spirit will settle in at the Fox Theatre early this year.

The holiday musical "White Christmas," with music and lyrics penned by songwriting great Irving Berlin, will open Tuesday for an eight-performance engagement. Atlanta is the opening city on the national tour.

"White Christmas," with its timeless music and large production numbers, follows friends Bob and Phil who start a successful song-and-dance act following their service in World War II. To bring guests to a Christmas show at a Vermont lodge owned by their former Army commander, the friends stage their newest Broadway hit, making an appeal to all their old Army pals to show up on Christmas Eve.

New Yorker Amy Bodnar will reprise the role of Betty Haynes, Bob's love interest, after a stint in "White Christmas" at the Denver Center.

"It's a story ... that takes us back to a simpler time, a happier time," Bodnar said of "White Christmas." "It's beautiful and you can bring your entire family to this show and be very comfortable and confident that everybody is going to have a good time."

One of the highlights of the show is the music -- classic Irving Berlin hits such as "Blue Skies," "Sisters," "Happy Holidays" and the title song "White Christmas."

"I think the songs are just incredible," Bodnar said. "The entire score is so beautiful. People will recognize so many of the great tunes. I do think that it would be a wonderful way to kick off the holiday season."