Celebrating Christmas With a Holiday Pops Concert by the PSO

Posted By Angie in Events


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During the holiday season there are so many events and concerts that vie for your attention, but The Pittsburgh Symphony's Holiday Pops concert is one that should definitely be on your list to attend.

This family-friendly concert has something for everyone with special guest performers and a fantastic variety of holiday music.

Holiday Pops is a Festive Christmas Tradition

Heinz Hall at Christmas

While the Holiday Pops performance program changes from year to year, you can count on the Pittsburgh Symphony and the Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh to perform, along with members of the pre-professional dancers of the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre to perform scenes from The Nutcracker.

In 2018, special guests also included Christopher Sanders as Santa Claus, violinist Jenny Oaks Baker, and Broadway singer Doug LaBrecque.

Holiday Pops at Pittsburgh Symphony

We attended a performance in 2018 and were very impressed with the variety and layout of the program. Pieces ranged from very traditional music like Handel's Hallelujah Chorus to unique arrangements like an Irish version of Ding Dong Merrily on High spotlighting violinist Jenny Oakes Baker and several other Pittsburgh Symphony musicians.

Santa, Caroling, and More!

PSO at Christmas

Of course, Santa made an appearance and interviewed several children in the audience, passed out some candy canes, and even sang a few songs as well.

Another highlight of the show was the singalong portion where the audience was invited to stand and sing several Christmas carols like Joy to the World and Silent Night.

Christmas at the Pittsburgh Symphony

And let's not forget that the backdrop for this fantastic performance is the magnificent Heinz Hall. During the holiday season it is lavishly decked out with garland, bows, and more – the centerpiece being the multi-story Christmas tree in the lobby. The tree makes a great spot for family photos!

Overall we thoroughly enjoyed the Pittsburgh Symphony's Holiday Pops concert as it provided a brief respite from the busyness and stress of the season and got us in the holiday spirit!

The Highmark Holiday POPs by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra typically begins mid-December and runs to the weekend before Christmas.

For more Christmas in Pittsburgh activities, click the previous link!

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