Missoula Symphony Orchestra Presents Sixteenth Annual Beloved Holiday Concert
Missoula, Montana) With chestnuts roasting, sleigh bells ringing and a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, the Missoula Symphony Orchestra and Chorale present one of Missoula’s favorite family holiday traditions: Holiday Pops, now in its sixteenth year, takes place on Saturday, December 5 at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, December 6, at 3 p.m. Both shows take place in the Dennison Theatre on the University of Montana campus.
The concert will include some classics, such as Pas de Deux from Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, which MSO music director Darko Butorac describes as “one of the most beautiful moments in the entire ballet,” and lots of favorites including variations of Joy to the World and Oh, Holy Night. Finnish composer Jean Sibelius’ symphonic poem Finlandia will take the audience to a more serene place, and Bill Holcombe’s jubilant Festive Sounds of Hanukkah offers a piece with numerous recognizable themes and tunes.
In the second half Orchestra and Chorale join together for Vivaldi’s Gloria—a rousing and beautiful piece that was written around 1715, but the words date back to the 4th Century. The 90-member Chorale then goes a capella (chorus only) with Andre Thomas’ spiritual-like arrangement of African Noel conducted by Peterson. “It’s a very rhythmic and uplifting piece,” he says,” and we’ll perform it with the addition of a few African percussion instruments.” The show ends with a finale by well-known pops conductor and arranger, Jeff Tyzik. His compilation Holiday Moods will feature the orchestra and chorus together, and is a medley of Deck the Halls, the Carol of the Bells, Oh Christmas Tree and Jingle Bells.
During the intermission for the fifth year running is another tradition, the “Encore Auction.” Popular with symphonies nationwide, this fundraising technique allows the audience to put their money on their collective favorite holiday piece for an encore. “This year we’re pitting the sacred favorite, Hallelujah Chorus, against the secular We Wish You a Merry Christmas, Butorac says. Whichever piece raises the most through individual donations, small and large, will be performed as an encore. Butorac reminds people to bring their wallets, as only cash and checks are accepted.
Tickets, which sell out faster than Santa’s sleigh, are available online at missoulasymphony.org, by phone at 721-3194, or in person at the Symphony office at 320 East Main Street. For more information on “Holiday Pops” and the MSO, visit missoulasymphony.org.
Press Release: November 25, 2015
Media Contact: Lucy Beighle (406) 239-3193