Utah Symphony Presents Festive Holiday Programming

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This holiday season, the Utah Symphony presents a jam-packed program that will entertain kids of all ages from one to 92. Between the magnificence of a 2,000-voice audience sing-a-long with Handel's "Messiah," to show stoppers Celtic Woman and Portland's "Little Orchestra," Pink Martini, with guests vocalists The von Trapps and NPR's Ari Shapiro, there is something to dazzle everyone this Christmas season. Tickets are on sale now, and can be purchased at utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.


On November 24 and 25 at 7:30 PM, The Utah Symphony, Messiah Chorus, and Salt Lake Community join together to share in the singing of Handel's masterpiece under the direction of Conner Gray Covington. Bring your family, and your score, and join in on the majesty of Handel's "Messiah." Tickets are priced from $14-$39 and can be purchased at utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.

Conner Gray Covington was recently appointed as the Assistant Conductor of the Utah Symphony, a position he began with the 2017-2018 season, and was promoted to Associate Conductor during the 2018-19 season. He completed his tenure as the Rita E. Hauser Conducting Fellow at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia where he worked closely with the Curtis Symphony Orchestra and the Curtis Opera Theater, while also being mentored by Philadelphia Orchestra Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

He made his Carnegie Hall debut with the Curtis Symphony Orchestra sharing the podium with Ludovic Morlot. Covington began his career as Assistant Conductor of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the Memphis Youth Symphony Program. A two-time recipient (2014, 2017) of a Career Assistance Award from the Solti Foundation U.S., he recently worked with the Nashville Symphony as a featured conductor in the 2016 Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview presented by the League of American Orchestras.


On December 18, multi-platinum Irish singing sensation Celtic Woman return to Abravanel Hall to present The Best of Christmas Tour with the Utah Symphony. Featuring music from the all-female ensemble's most favorite Yuletide songs performed by them over the years, this quartet is a crowd favorite. Prepare for an enchanting and festive evening filled with mesmerizing music, performance, and holiday cheer. Tickets are priced from $45 to $125 and can be purchased at utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.

Multi-platinum Irish music sensation Celtic Woman was named Billboard magazine's World Albums Artist of the Year six times, and has scored two Top 10 debuts on Billboard's main album chart and five Top Five DVDs on Billboard's Top Video chart, as well as achieving platinum-level sales in nine different countries.

Celtic Woman is comprised of four young Irish women - Mairéad Carlin, Éabha McMahon, gifted violinist Tara McNeill and the group's newest member Megan Walsh - whose performing skills bring centuries of musical and cultural tradition to life. In concert, their angelic voices and instrumental virtuosity are accompanied by a robust ensemble that includes Irish dancers, bagpipers and a full band playing an array of traditional Celtic instruments, including bodhran, tin whistle, bouzouki and Uilleann pipes.

Presenting a one of a kind concert experience showcasing four gifted Irish women- three stunning vocalists and a brilliant Celtic violinist, Celtic Woman will perform their timeless Christmas songs accompanied by the stirring instruments of a full symphony orchestra. The "Best of Christmas, the Symphony Tour" features music from the all-female music ensemble's holiday releases; the platinum-selling "A Christmas Celebration" and "Home For Christmas CD" and live concert DVD, "Home for Christmas: Live from Dublin."


On December 21 and 22 at 7:30 PM, world-famous musical group Pink Martini returns to Abravanel Hall for a high-energy performance with the Utah Symphony that encompasses multiple languages and genres. Ari Shapiro, NPR host of "All Things Considered," and The von Trapps join Portland's "Little Orchestra" for a holiday concert that is sure to ring in the festive season with glitz and glamor. Tickets start range from $31 to $92 and can be purchased at www.utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.

The musicians of Pink Martini are well-known for their culturally eclectic repertoire. The ensemble draws inspiration from music from all over the world and fuses the genres of classical, jazz and old-fashioned pop. Their vocalists are multilingual and sing in different languages including English, Spanish, Arabic, Japanese, and French. For most, it is easy to relate to their music, energy, and appeal, and "The New York Times" said, "The sparkle of fantasy, even more than musicianship or internationalism, just might be the secret to Pink Martini's success."

Crossing genres and hoping to appeal to conservatives and liberals alike, Thomas Lauderdale began piano lessons at age six in rural Indiana before moving to Portland, Oregon in 1982 and studying under Sylvia Killman. At the age of 14 he made his first appearance with the Oregon Symphony. After being active in politics since high school and serving under mayors, governors, and commissioners he attended Harvard, graduating with honors in History in Literature in 1992. In 1994 he founded Portland's "little orchestra" to provide more beautiful inclusive musical soundtracks for political fundraisers, for causes such as civil rights, affordable housing, the environment, libraries, public broadcasting, education, and parks. One year later Mr. Lauderdale called Harvard classmate China Forbes, asking her to join his new music group, and they immediately began to write songs together. With their first song "Sympathique" becoming an overnight success their presence was immediately solidified in France when they were nominated for "Song of the Year." Since then, Pink Martini's dozen musicians have played on some of the world's most well-known stages including Royal Albert Hall in London, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Carnegie Hall, and the Governor's Ball at the 80th Academy Awards confirming that their "little orchestra" has a giant presence.

Sofia, Melanie, Amanda and August von Trapp, the actual great-grandchildren of Captain and Maria von Trapp, made famous by the movie "The Sound of Music," began work on the band's eighth studio album, "Dream a Little Dream." These siblings have been singing together for 12 years and have toured all over the world in concert. Drawn into the magical orbit of Thomas Lauderdale, they now live together in a house in Portland, Oregon and have been frequent guest performers with Pink Martini for the past two years. The album, released in March 2014, traverses the world, from Sweden to Rwanda to China to Bavaria, and features guest appearances by The Chieftains, Wayne Newton, "Jungle" Jack Hanna, and Charmian Carr (who played Liesl in the original Sound of Music).


On December 22 at 11 AM and 12:30 PM, get into the holiday spirit with your wintry favorites performed live by the Utah Symphony in two 45-minute programs without intermission. Families will enjoy decking the halls with the musical gifts on stage, and the fun of a joyful sing-along closing out the concert. There may even be a special appearance by the jolly man himself. Tickets range from $8 to $27 and can be purchased at utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.


The Utah Symphony presents
"Messiah" Sing-in
November 24 & 25 | 7:30 PM | Maurice Abravanel Hall (123 West South Temple)

Additional Information: We will be using the Bärenreiter edition of Handel's Messiah for this performance.

Conner Gray Covington, Conductor

Tickets range from $14-$39 and can be purchased at utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.


Celtic Woman: The Best of Christmas with the Utah Symphony
December 18 | 7:30 PM | Maurice Abravanel Hall (123 West South Temple)

Lloyd Butler, guest conductorMairéad Carlin, vocalist Éabha McMahon, vocalistTara McNeill, vocalist and violinMegan Walsh, vocalist

Signature Performance: No discounts available.

Tickets range from $45-$125 and can be purchased at utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.


Pink Martini's "Joy to the World: A Holiday Spectacular with the Utah Symphony"
December 21 & 22 | 7:30 PM | Abravanel Hall (123 West South Temple)

Thomas M. Lauderdale, piano Ari Shapiro, guest vocalist Edna Vazquez, guest vocalist, guitarKatie Harmon Ebner, guest vocalistThe von Trapps, guest vocals Gavin Bondy, trumpet Robert Taylor, trombone Nicholas Crosa, violin Phil Baker, upright bass Dan Faehnle, guitar Timothy Nishimoto, vocals and percussion Brian Davis, congas and percussion Miguel Bernal, congas and percussion Reinhardt Melz, drums and percussion

Selections to be announced from the stage

Tickets range from $45 - $125 and can be purchased at utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.


The Utah Symphony presents Here Comes Santa Claus!
December 22 | 11:00 AM and 12:30 PM | Abravanel Hall (123 West South Temple)

Tickets range from $8-$27 and can be purchased at utahsymphony.org or by calling (801) 533-6683.

SPONSORS Concert Sponsor: George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation

About the Utah Symphony Founded in 1940, the Utah Symphony performs more than 175 concerts each season and offers all Utahns easy access to world class live musical performances of the world's greatest music in the state's top venues. Since being named the orchestra's seventh music director in 2009, Thierry Fischer has attracted leading musicians and top soloists, refreshed programming, drawn increased audiences, and galvanized community support. In addition to numerous regional and domestic tours, including the Mighty 5 Tour of Utah's National Parks, the Utah Symphony has embarked on seven international tours and performed at Carnegie Hall in Spring 2016 coinciding with the orchestra's 75th anniversary celebrations. The Utah Symphony has released more than 100 recordings, including Mahler Symphony No. 1 in Fall 2017, and will be releasing the first of three CDs of all Saint-Saëns works in December 2018. Utah Symphony | Utah Opera, the orchestra's parent organization, reaches 450,000 residents in Utah and the Intermountain region, with educational outreach programs serving around 137,000 students annually. In addition to performances in its home in Salt Lake City, Abravanel Hall, and concerts throughout the state of Utah, the Utah Symphony participates in Utah Opera's four annual productions at the Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre and presents the six-week Deer Valley Music Festival each summer in Park City, Utah. With its many subscription, education, and outreach concerts and tours, the Utah Symphony is one of the most engaged orchestras in the nation. For more information, visit utahsymphony.org.

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