Colorado Symphony Performs their 27th Colorado Christmas to a Greatful Crowd
This was not your typical stuffy orchestral concert of classical music, where the audience sat in silence with the musicians playing some masterpiece technically perfect with polite applause at the end. No, there was singing and dancing, standing ovations, audience participation and copious amounts of laughter throughout the hall. This was a typical Colorado Christmas, one of joy and holiday spirit.
Scott O'Neil conducted the concert with his flair for connecting with the audience. The Colorado Symphony is extremely fortunate to have such a talent, effusive associate conductor. It's one thing to conduct a concert of diverse pieces ranging from traditional Christmas favorite like "Joy to the World" or variations of the classics like Ellington's swing rendition of "Sugar Rum Cherry" as well as classic pieces from Handel to Vaughn-Williams. But O'Neil's real talent lies in his warm personality that radiated Christmas cheer and infected the entire concert hall, from performers to audience members.
The best moment of the concert was a new piece written, Chorale on a Medieval Melody" by Colorado Symphony's own Principal Timpanist William Hill. The ethereal opening with a Celtic violin solo performed by Claude Sim set the mood for mediation about peace. The Colorado Symphony Chorus joined in to create a sense of contemplation and reflection. I sincerely hope Colorado Symphony keeps this piece as a regular part of their Christmas concert.
Kim Robards Dance provided a dancers for selections from The Nutcracker as well as adding visual color to pieces throughout the night. Christie Hagelman's sweet, lyrical voice added warmth and affection to Flaherty's "Once Upon a December" and Berlin's "White Christmas." Colorado Children's Chorale rounded out the performance with singing (and dancing) in "My Dancing Day, On Christmas Night." Add to all this lighting effects you typically don't get in a classical music concert, audience sing-along sections and a general feeling of festive holiday cheer and you come pretty close to getting a glimpse at the what the Colorado Symphony's Colorado Christmas concert was like.
Colorado Christmas is one of the Family Series of concerts by the Colorado Symphony and a tradition here in Colorado from the past 27 years, one that only seems to grow stronger each year. If you haven't ever been, there is still one more performance on Sunday Afternoon (Dec 12th) at 2:30. Start your own tradition catching the spirit of the season with the Colorado Symphony.