Popping With the Sounds of Holiday Cheer

There’s no need to travel outside New Hampshire for first-rate holiday pops symphony and choral performances.

Here are some of our favorite picks for the 2019 holiday season.

The Boston Pops perform at Manchester’s SNHU Arena on December 21.

Greater Keene Pops Choir

The Greater Keene Pops Choir is a unique performing ensemble that sings popular American music in all its many styles. Under the direction of Diane Cushing and accompanied by Walt Sayre, the “Pops” will perform their winter concert “A December to Remember.”

What: Holiday Pops
When: December 1, 2019 at 3 p.m.
Where: Colonial Theatre
95 Main St., Keene
Tickets: $12 in advance and $15 day of the show
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Symphony NH

Join Symphony NH for two performances of An Americana Holiday With Act of Congress. (Act of Congress is a Birmingham, Alabama, based singer-songwriter group.)

What: An Americana Holiday With Act of Congress
When: December 7, 2019 at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. and December 8 , 2019 at 3 and 5 p.m.
Where: Keefe Center for the Arts (December 7)
117 Elm St., Nashua

Dana Center at Saint Anselm College (December 8)
100 Saint Anselm Dr., Manchester
Tickets: $18-$52
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The NH Phil

Everyone looks forward to this concert! Great for young and old to get into the holiday spirit, with sing-alongs and many holiday favorites.

What: Holiday Pops
When: December 14, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. and December 15, 2019 at 2 p.m.
Where: Seifert Auditorium
44 Geremonty Dr., Salem
Tickets: $5-$30
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New venue!

A Cathedral-style Christmas at The Rex

A Cathedral-style Christmas at The Rex is a classical holiday concert presented by St. Joseph Cathedral. This wonderful tradition has been enjoyed by families for years at the cathedral, and this year, the tradition continues but the location has changed to the newly renovated Rex Theatre. The program features the music of Mozart’s “Vespers” as well as selections from Handel’s “Messiah” including the “Hallelujah Chorus.”

What: Classic holiday concert
When: December 14, 2019 at 1 and 7:30 p.m.
Where: The brand new Rex Theatre
23 Amherst St., Manchester
Tickets: $30
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Lakes Region Symphony Orchestra

Back by popular demand, the beloved Michael Gallagan regains the spotlight to enchant with a mix of old and new holiday favorites in an all-new holiday program with selections from Harry Connick, Jr., Donny Hathaway, Michael Buble, Seth McFarlane and many more.

What: Holiday Pops Concert
When: December 14, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. and December 15, 2019 at 3 p.m.
Where: Inter-Lakes high School Auditorium
1 Laker Ln., Meredith
Tickets: $20 for adults and $10 for students
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Strafford Wind Symphony

Get into the holiday spirit with the annual Strafford Wind Symphony Holiday Pops Concert, featuring familiar favorites.

What: Annual Holiday Performances
When: December 15, 2019 at 4 p.m. and December 21, 2019 at 7 p.m.
Where: December 15: Emmanuel Church, 63 Eastern Ave., Rochester
December 21: Sanford Performing Arts Center, 100 Alumni Blvd., Sanford, ME
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Portsmouth Symphony Orchestra

Join the Portsmouth Symphony and Portsmouth High School Madrigal Singers for a spectacularly themed show: Holidays at the Movies. Favorites from “Home Alone,” “The Polar Express,” “Nightmare Before Christmas” and “The Grinch” are sure to delight all ages. And of course a few traditional songs and a holiday sing along will put your whole family in the spirit of the season.

What: Family Holiday Pops
When: December 17-18, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Where: Portsmouth High School
50 Andrew Jarvis Dr., Portsmouth
Tickets: $15-$30
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Boston Pops

Join the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra and Conductor Keith Lockhart for this annual, beloved Holiday Pops concert. Attendees can look forward to their favorite holiday songs and crowd sing-alongs.

What: Boston Pops Annual Holiday Concert
When: December 21, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Where: SNHU Arena
555 Elm St., Manchester
Tickets: $78, $58, $48 and $43
Available in person at the box office, via Ticketmaster or by phone (800) 745-3000
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Capital Jazz Orchestra

Ring in the holiday season with a special yuletide program featuring the Capital Jazz Orchestra and vocalists CJ Poole and Laura Daigle, along with narrator Laura Knoy of NHPR, who will be reciting her traditional version of “The Night Before Christmas.” The stockings will be brimming with holiday musical chestnuts, an audience sing-along and additional special surprises that are sure to leave everybody in the holiday spirit.

What: Holiday Pops
When: December 22, 2019 at 4 p.m.
Where: Capitol Center for the Arts
44 S. Main St., Concord
Tickets: $27.50-$47.50
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More Holiday Performances and Concerts

Eric Mintel Quartet’s “Charlie Brown Jazz Christmas”

“Charlie Brown” jazz includes the legendary “Linus and Lucy,” “Skating,” “Christmas is Coming,” “Christmas Time is Here” and many reworked holiday favorites. Featuring Eric Mintel on the piano, Nelson Hill on the sax and flute, Jack Hegyi on the electric bass and Dave Mohn on the drums.

When: November 23, 2019 8 p.m.
Where: The Spotlight Room at the Palace Theatre
80 Hanover St., Manchester
Tickets: $29
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“A New England Christmas”

Marguerite Mathews and Greg Gathers, co-artistic directors of Pontine Theatre offer two holiday tales, one from the New World and one from the Old.

“A Neighbor’s Landmark: A Winter Tale with a Christmas Ending” is based on a short story by South Berwick native Sarah Orne Jewett. Set in a rustic coastal fishing village at the end of the 19th century, this is a tale of a taciturn Yankee farmer and his family, who fight to save a pair of landmark pines from a greedy timber contractor. Their struggle brings the whole community together, just in time for Christmas.

In Dylan Thomas’ “A Child’s Christmas in Wales,” the author wanders through memories of the Christmases of his childhood, evoking warmth, humor, wonder and delight.

When: November 29-December 8, 2019
Fridays 7 p.m., Saturdays 3 p.m., Sundays 2 p.m.
Where: Pontine Theatre
1 Plains Ave., Portsmouth
Tickets: $27
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“A Charlie Brown Christmas” Performed by the Heather Pierson Trio

Heather Pierson is a pianist, singer/songwriter and performer based in Conway. “A Charlie Brown Christmas” was originally telecast in December 1965 and was an instant hit with audiences who connected with Peanuts’ creator Charles M. Schultz’s cast of characters – especially with its round-headed hero Charlie Brown, his woefully scrawny Christmas tree and his typewriter-wielding dog Snoopy.

When: December 6, 2019 at 7 p.m.
Where: Plainfield Baptist Church
1094 Route 12A, Plainfield
Tickets: $15
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Ed Gerhard’s Holiday Concerts

Grammy Award-winning guitarist Ed Gerhard will perform soulful arrangements of well-loved carols, as well as his own concert favorites. Fans of guitar music and Christmas alike will want to be a part of these memorable shows.

When: December 7, 13-14, 2019
Where: The Belknap Mill (December 7 at 7:30 p.m.)
25 Beacon St. E., Laconia

Unitarian Church (December 13-14 7:30 p.m. both nights, plus 2 p.m. on December 14)
292 State St., Portsmouth
Tickets: See website for information

NH Gay Men’s Chorus Holiday Concert Series

NHGMC is giving four performances of the 2019 Holiday Concert Series “Amid The Winter’s Snow.”

When: December 7-8 and 14-15, 2019
December 7: First Baptist Church of Nashua at 7:30 p.m.
December 8: South Church, Portsmouth at 4 p.m.
December 14: Wesley United Methodist Church, Concord at 7:30 p.m.
December 15: Derryfield School, Manchester at 4 p.m.
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Granite State Ringers Concert

The Granite State Ringers (GSR) group was organized as a community handbell choir by Mary Divers and Joan Fossum in February of 2007. Their vision was to offer musicians who are committed to the art of handbell ringing a chance to play a variety of challenging music and to promote handbell repertoire to audiences all over New Hampshire.

When: December 15, 2019
Where: The Tillotson Center
14 Carriage Ln., Colebrook
Tickets: $10
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The Christmas Revels — An English Celebration of the Winter Solstice

Each year, Revels North explores the holiday traditions of a different country and time.

In a small town in Northern England at the height of the Industrial Revolution, it’s business as usual at the textile mill on Christmas Day. Despite the factory owner’s controlling presence, the hopeful and resilient community of workers is able to celebrate the season … thanks to a little help from the hands of Fate.

Join Revels North for the first time at historic Lebanon Opera House for a magical, musical and inspiring 45th Christmas Revelswith all of the pageantry and tradition that have defined The Christmas Revels since 1975. Audience sing-alongs, children’s singing games, a mummers play, the mysterious Abbots Bromley Horn Dance and Susan Cooper’s poem “The Shortest Day” will weave together with an engaging story of struggle and the strength of the human spirit in this original production by Revels North.

When: December 21-23, 2019
December 21 at 2 and 7 p.m.
December 22 at 7 p.m.
December 23 at 2 and 7 p.m.
Where: The Lebanon Opera House
51 North Park St., Lebanon
Tickets: $8-$47
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Chanukah at the Palace

A very special variety show on the second night of Chanukah featuring performances by Shir Soul and Mark Nizer.

When: December 23, 2019 6:30 p.m.
Where: The Palace Theatre
80 Hanover St., Manchester
Tickets: $14 for adults and $8 for children
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Categories: Holiday Guide Events