It’s Christmas Concert Week in Salt Lake City for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir! Each year two wonderful guest stars are welcomed to the ‘big house’ (aka Conference Center) where stunning Christmas magic happens. This week we are welcoming international soprano opera super-star Deborah Voigt and Welsh actor John Rhys-Davies (best known for portraying the dwarf Gimli in The Lord of the Rings trilogy and the charismatic Arab excavator Sallah in the Indiana Jones films)!
Schedules that were already in ‘high gear’ shift into “some kind of crazy” when Christmas Concert week arrives. We just strap in and hold on, and somehow we survive the madness and it all turns out miraculously awesome.
For me, this year’s “crazy” is unprecedented since I will not only be trying to put in a full day at the office and then rush through holiday traffic to get to nightly rehearsals and performances, I also need to squeeze out space for visits to the hospital to be with daughter-A and time to talk to her doctors and care providers and try to keep coordinating things. Needless to say, for the next few days, I’m probably going to be MIA here on the blog. However, I have scheduled some posts that share glimpses of past Christmas Concert performances that I’ve had the joy of personally participating in. This way, I hope you can experience a little of the Christmas Concert Week magic too, wherever in the world you may be.
And if you’re in SLC, I hope you’ll be coming to see this year’s concert!
FUN CONCERT FACTS
- Four concert performances are given to a packed house of 21,000 people each show. Thurs, Fri, Sat nights and Sunday morning.
- The event is always given as a FREE gift to the public!
- Tickets are required for entrance which are distributed by lottery months in advance.
- If you don’t have a ticket, come anyway! There is a standby line & if you arrive early, you have good odds of getting in.
- If you don’t make it inside the Conference Center for the show, you can still watch it streamed LIVE to other locations on Temple Square, such as the Tabernacle and North Visitor’s Center buildings!
Christmas Concert – 2008
My first Christmas Concert as a member of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir was December 2008. It remains one of many “personal favorites”. Our guests were the incomparable Broadway leading man, Brian “Stokes” Mitchell and beloved veteran actor of stage and screen Edward Herrmann.
At the end of each Christmas Concert week, our guest artists, Choir, Orchestra, Bell ringers, Dancers, and the entire Mormon Tabernacle Choir “family” join together for one last grand finale during the weekly Sunday morning broadcast of Music and the Spoken Word. Featuring highlights from the weekly Christmas concert, the 28 minute radio/television program airs live or tape delayed on over 2,000 worldwide channels, and thanks to the magic of YouTube, you are now able to enjoy the program any time you like!
Christmas Special with Brian Stokes Mitchell and Edward Herrmann.
THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS
Music And The Spoken Word, Sunday December 14, 2008
“Though in a manger thou draw breath, thou art greater than life and death.” – Longfellow
And because He lives, each one of us may live on again, in hope and peace – FOREVER!
I first became fully aware of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s Christmas programs because of being a fan of David Archuleta. I’m one of the many “grandma fans” who love that boy. I have a grandson his same age. As a result of watching youtube videos of David with the Choir, I came across videos of Brian Stokes Mitchell with the Choir. I went online and purchased the DVD of his performance and loved it. I had seen him on PBS’s presentation of South Pacific with Reba MacIntire. I wasn’t familiar with him, but was so impressed with his voice. When he sang the opening for Angels We Have Heard On High, with the Choir, I was just amazed. I sent him an email and told him how much I enjoyed it, and also told him “He Rocked”. I’m sure he was amused and he sent me an email back thanking me. He has an amazing voice. Of course, I thought David did an awesome job when it was his turn to sing with you all. It was through his singing that year that I found your blog. I don’t remember exactly how I stumbled across it, but I’m so glad I did. I have been blessed many times over by reading it. As I said, I’ve had a rough year, and you have no idea how many times your blog has said just what I needed to hear. May God send you many blessings in the coming year, as you’ve been such a blessing to those you don’t even know are aware of you. Love, Lynne