Though the weather outside is delightful, soon the seasons will change and the holidays will be upon us, as carols and other yuletide music will go ringing throughout Symphony Center. Starting July 21, tickets will go on sale for a festive array of seasonal concerts in November and December, including the musical revue “Merry, Merry Chicago” and the annual CSO Brass showcase. Concerts begin Nov. 24 and continue through Dec. 23 at Symphony Center, unless otherwise noted.
‘HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER’S STONE’: Led by guest conductor Richard Kaufman, members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra perform a live-to-picture presentation of the first title in one of Hollywood’s most beloved film franchises on Nov. 24-25 (8 p.m.) and Nov. 26 (3 p.m.). Featuring John Williams’ Oscar-nominated score, “The Scorcerer’s Stone” is part of the Harry Potter Film Concert series, another multimedia experience from J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World. Launched in June 2016, the Harry Potter Film Concert series consists of hundreds of performances across more than 35 countries worldwide through 2018. The Nov. 24 performance opens the 2017-18 CSO at the Movies series, with two non-subscription performances offered on Nov. 25-26.
THE VIENNA BOYS CHOIR: Continuing an annual tradition, the Vienna Boys Choir returns for a 3 p.m. matinee on Nov. 25. Established more than 500 years ago, the choir is known for its polished sound, irresistible charm and wide repertoire, ranging from Renaissance-era music to contemporary works.
A CHANTICLEER CHRISTMAS: The Grammy Award-winning vocal ensemble Chanticleer marks its 17th annual Chicago yuletide engagement with two performances at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 5-6 at the Fourth Presbyterian Church, 126 E. Chestnut. Based in San Francisco, founded in 1978 and celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2018, the 12-voice male a cappella ensemble will offer a program of traditional carols, sacred works and holiday favorites.
‘HOME ALONE’ IN CONCERT: The holiday-themed 1990 comedy returns for another Symphony Center engagement Dec. 9 (3 p.m. ) and Dec. 12 (1 and 4:30 p.m.), as guest conductor Richard Kaufman leads members of the CSO in John Williams’ Oscar-nominated score. Written by John Hughes, directed by Chris Columbus and shot in Chicago and on the North Shore, “Home Alone” became the highest-grossing comedy up to that time. (Adjusted for inflation, it still remains No. 1 on the list of all-time highest-grossing live-action comedies.)
MERRY, MERRY CHICAGO: Returning for its third year, the CSO’s holiday revue features members of the CSO, conducted by Emil de Cou, performing holiday favorites, a festive sing-along including “Christmas in Chicago” with the Chicago Children’s Choir and a speical guest from the North Pole. Also appearing will be Broadway star Ashley Brown and the Chicago Children’s Choir, with artistic director Josephine Lee. Six performances, Dec. 15 (7 p.m.), Dec. 16 (3 p.m.), Dec. 17 (1 and 4:30 p.m.), Dec. 22 (7 p.m.) and Dec. 23 (3 p.m.).
CSO BRASS: Known for its power and precision, the ensemble will perform traditional brass repertoire as well as symphonic masterworks and holiday treasures in an evening concert beginning at 8 p.m. Dec. 20.
Tickets for all CSOA-presented 2016 holiday performances may be purchased beginning July 21 by phone at (312) 294-3000, online at cso.org or by visiting the Symphony Center box office, 220 S. Michigan.
TOP: Santa Claus, Ashley Brown and conductor Emil de Cou get into the spirit of the season at “Merry, Merry Chicago.” | Todd Rosenberg Photography