5 traditional holiday music concerts in and around Chicago

It wouldn’t be the holidays without a rousing rendition of “Sleigh Ride” or a moving performance of “Silent Night.” Find traditional holiday music in and around Chicago at these performances.

Holiday Harmonies

Ravinia’s Bennett Gordon Hall, 200 Ravinia Park Rd., Highland Park,

Sat., Dec. 10, 5 p.m.

Choral conductor Robert Shaw was known for his arrangements and recordings of Christmas music, and this concert of his work features his protegee Sylvia McNair as well as Vocality, the new chorus created by Chicago Children’s Choir director Josephine Lee. Program includes favorites like “Winter Wonderland” and “O Holy Night.”

DuPage Symphony Orchestra’s Holiday Sweets and Musical Treats

North Central College’s Wentz Hall, 171 E Chicago Ave., Naperville

Sun., Dec. 10, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.

This family holiday concert features traditional songs celebrating Christmas and Hanukkah, as well as songs marking the end of one year and the start of a new one. Program includes “Sleigh Ride“ and “Jingle Bells Forever” as well as the more modern classic “Polar Express.” It’s possible that the man of the hour from the North Pole will make an appearance, too.

Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Merry, Merry Chicago

Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago

Dec. 16-17 and 22-23, Times vary

Traditional carols are a focus of this event that is a tradition itself, marking its 60th anniversary this year. There are also sing-alongs of festive favorites and a special appearance by Santa and Mrs. Claus. The CSO recommends that concert attendees be age 5 or older. You can also enjoy pre-concert holiday music from community ensembles 45 minutes before each concert.

Merry Tuba Christmas

Palmer House Hilton Grand Ballroom, 17 E. Monroe St., Chicago

Sat., Dec. 23, 12:30 p.m.

Tuba Christmas is an event that started more than four decades ago and is going strong around the world. The Chicago performance will be held in the Palmer House and conducted by Colonel Bryan Shelburne, Commander U.S. Army Band, (retired). This is a particularly great event for elementary-age kids who play brass in the school band. Organizers encourage audience members to bring a non-perishable food item which will be distributed to the Greater Chicago Food Depository.

Chicago Children’s Choir Neighborhood Choir Winter concerts

Various locations and dates around the city

From Rogers Park to Hyde Park to Lincoln Park, there are many winter concerts performed by different neighborhood choirs who are part of the Chicago Children’s Choir. Events are free. You can find a listing here.

We hope that this holiday season you hear all the classic carols that bring you comfort and joy!

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