St. Louis Symphony Orchestra celebrates the holiday season with four weeks of festive performances

December's holiday programs include Grammy Award winners Leslie Odom, Jr., and TAKE 6, Handel's iconic Messiah, Home Alone in concert, the annual Mercy Holiday Celebration, music from recent Disney animated films, and the surprise-filled BMO Private Bank New Year's Eve Celebration

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(November 7, 2018, St. Louis, MO) – The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra invites audiences to celebrate the holiday season at Powell Hall with seven different programs between Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve. Each year, the SLSO welcomes 40,000 visitors during the month of December to enjoy both classical and Live at Powell Hall concerts.

Powell HallAfter a sold-out performance with the SLSO last year, Tony and Grammy Award-winning singer Leslie Odom, Jr. returns to perform with the orchestra on Sunday, December 2. Best known for originating the role of Aaron Burr in the Broadway hit Hamilton, Odom will perform hits from his jazz album and his holiday album, Simply Christmas. Grammy Award-winning a cappella group TAKE 6 also returns to St. Louis for a performance of gospel hits with the SLSO on December 20. Limited tickets remain for this annual event.

The SLSO also presents a special program of traditional and contemporary holiday music at the Mercy Holiday Celebration December 21-23, led by Resident Conductor Gemma New. The program features the Holiday Festival Chorus, a choir of high school students from throughout the St. Louis region. Patrons can have their photo taken with Santa before the concert.

Families are invited to experience the music of the popular Christmas comedy, Home Alone, as the film plays on the big screen while the SLSO performs John Williams' score live December 14-16. Due to popular demand, a fourth performance has been added.

Disney fans will be treated on December 28-29 with hits from Walt Disney Animation Studios films from the past ten years, including Moana, Zootopia, and Frozen. And no holiday season is complete with the "Hallelujah Chorus" from Handel's Messiah, performed by the St. Louis Symphony Chorus December 7-9. Holidays with the SLSO closes with a treasured tradition: the BMO Private Bank New Year's Eve concert. Former SLSO Resident Conductor Ward Stare returns to conduct this concert that is full of surprises.

Tickets for these concerts are on sale now and can be purchased or by calling the SLSO Box Office at 314-534-1700.

An Evening with Leslie Odom, Jr.

Sunday, December 2, 2018, 7:00pm
Powell Hall, 718 N. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, MO

A rising star following his acclaimed turn as Aaron Burr in Broadway's Hamilton, Leslie Odom, Jr. returns to Powell Hall for a night of smooth Christmas melodies on December 2. The Tony and Grammy Award-winning Odom will serenade the audience with selections from his album, Simply Christmas, along with hits from his eponymous debut solo album.

Handel's Messiah

Friday, December 7, 2018, 8:00pm
Saturday, December 8, 2018, 8:00pm
Sunday, December 9, 2018, 3:00pm
Powell Hall, 718 N. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, MO

Matthew Halls, conductor
Karina Gauvin, soprano
Krisztina Szabó, mezzo-soprano
Nicholas Phan, tenor
William Berger, baritone
St. Louis Symphony Chorus
Amy Kaiser, director

HANDEL Messiah

One of the most recognizable choral masterpieces of all time, Messiah features the "Hallelujah Chorus" – a timeless symbol of the Christmas season.

Attend the free Pre-Concert Conversation at 7:00pm Friday and Saturday, and 2:00pm Sunday in the auditorium. This week, St. Louis Symphony Chorus director Amy Kaiser will lead the conversation with St. Louis Symphony Chorus members Lillian Pinto de Sá and Malachi Owens, Jr.

Tune in to St. Louis Public Radio on Saturday, December 8, at 8:00pm for the live broadcast of the performance, along with interviews of conductor Matthew Halls and tenor Nicholas Phan during intermission. Listen on air (90.7 FM KWMU) or online (

Home Alone in concert

Friday, December 14, 2018, 7:00pm
Saturday, December 15, 2018, 2:00pm
Saturday, December 15, 2018, 7:00pm
Sunday, December 16, 2018, 2:00pm
Powell Hall, 718 N. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, MO

Joshua Gersen, conductor
Webster University Chorale
Trent A. Patterson, director

This comedy classic features renowned composer John Williams' charming score performed live by the SLSO. See what antics eight-year-old Kevin McCallister comes up with when he is accidentally left behind from a family Christmas vacation. The performance also features the Webster University Chorale.

A Gospel Christmas with TAKE 6

Thursday, December 20, 2018, 7:30pm
Powell Hall, 718 N. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, MO

Kevin McBeth, conductor
TAKE 6, vocals
St. Louis Symphony IN UNISON Chorus

The annual Gospel Christmas concert returns with IN UNISON Chorus and Director Kevin McBeth and the SLSO performing with ten-time Grammy Award-winning a cappella group TAKE 6. This concert is supported by Monsanto Fund.

*Limited tickets remain.

Mercy Holiday Celebration

Friday, December 21, 2018, 2:00pm
Friday, December 21, 2018, 7:30pm
Saturday, December 22, 2018, 2:00pm
Saturday, December 22, 2018, 7:30pm
Sunday, December 23, 2018, 2:00pm
Powell Hall, 718 N. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, MO

Gemma New, conductor
Camille Zamora, soprano

The SLSO is joined by the Holiday Festival Chorus, a choir composed of area high school singers, for merry performances featuring timeless Christmas classics, carols, familiar favorites, and Santa Claus. These concerts are presented by Mercy.

Walt Disney Animation Studios: A Decade in Concert

Friday, December 28, 2018, 7:00pm
Saturday, December 29, 2018, 2:00pm
Powell Hall, 718 N. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, MO

Gemma New, conductor

The SLSO plays beloved hits from Walt Disney Animation Studios films from the past ten years. Films featured include Wreck-It Ralph, Zootopia, Moana, and more, including the instant hit, "Let It Go" from Frozen.

BMO Private Bank New Year's Eve Celebration

Monday, December 31, 2018, 7:30pm
Powell Hall, 718 N. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, MO

Ward Stare, conductor

New Year's Eve with the SLSO is a night full of surprises as the orchestra rings in 2019. Former SLSO Resident Conductor Ward Stare returns to the podium to lead a program of repertoire announced from the stage as the program happens. This concert is presented by BMO Private Bank.

Tune in to St. Louis Public Radio for a live broadcast of the concert. Listen on air (90.7 FM KWMU) or online (

About the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
Celebrated as one of today's most exciting and enduring orchestras, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra is the second-oldest orchestra in the country, marking its 139th year with the 2018/2019 season. Widely considered one of the world's finest, the SLSO maintains its commitment to artistic excellence, educational impact, and community connections – all in service to its mission of enriching lives through the power of music.

In addition to its regular concert performances at Powell Hall, which has been the permanent home of the SLSO for 50 years, the orchestra is an integral part of the diverse and vibrant St. Louis community, presenting free education programs and performances throughout the region each year. It presents St. Louis Symphony Live at the Pulitzer, a four-program series at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation. The SLSO also serves as the resident orchestra for Opera Theatre Saint Louis, with this season marking the 42nd year of their partnership.

The Grammy Award–winning SLSO's impact beyond the St. Louis region is realized through weekly Saturday night concert broadcasts on St. Louis Public Radio, acclaimed recordings, and regular touring activity. A sought-after artistic partner by preeminent musicians and composers from across the globe, as well as by local and national organizations, the SLSO enjoys a long history of robust and enduring artistic collaborations that have developed and deepened over the years.

Today, the SLSO builds on the institution's current momentum on all fronts, including artistic, financial, audience growth, and community impact, and looks toward the future with Stéphane Denève. Denève, who has been a frequent guest conductor with the orchestra since 2003, begins his tenure as Music Director with the 19/20 season, following this season as Music Director Designate. For more information, visit

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