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The sounds of Christmas: 19 holiday shows in Utah Valley

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Michael DuBois as Joseph and Julia Sanchez as Mary watch over the baby Jesus, played by Cedar Andrews, in Liken's THE FIRST CHRISTMAS, a heartwarming musical playing at the SCERA Center Nov. 29 - Dec. 21. (Photo by Mark A. Philbrick)

Michael DuBois as Joseph and Julia Sanchez as Mary watch over the baby Jesus, played by Cedar Andrews, in Liken’s “The First Christmas,” a heartwarming musical playing at the SCERA Center Nov. 29-Dec. 21. (Photo by Mark A. Philbrick)

To many Utah Valley residents it’s just not the Christmas season until they’ve watched “The Christmas Carol” at Hale Center Theater or listened to Michael McLean’s “The Forgotten Carols.” Here’s a look at Christmas concerts and performances in the valley and beyond:

Ryan Shupe & The RubberBand Christmas Concert

WHEN: Monday, Dec. 2, at 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Covey Center for the Arts, 425 W. Center St., Provo
COST: $16
TICKETS AND INFO: shupe.net and coveycenter.org

Watching Ryan Shupe and the RubberBand in action is a memorable experience, and their annual Christmas show “The Gift” is no exception. Combining impressive musical skills with hilarity and a heartfelt message, the show is bound to captivate audience members of all ages. Watch for special guests including Sam Payne and Kris Kringle.

Mindy Gledhill Christmas Concert

WHEN: Monday, Dec. 2, at 7:30 p.m. (Doors open at 6:30 p.m.)
WHERE: Velour Live Music Gallery, 135 N. University Ave., Provo
COST: $12 ($10 with group discount)
TICKETS AND INFO: zvents.com

Local darling Mindy Gledhill kicks off the Christmas season with a family-friendly concert, singing selections from her “Winter Moon” album.

UVMCO Presents Portraits of Christmas

WHEN: Tuesday, Dec. 3, at 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City
COST: $17–$36
TICKETS AND INFO: arttix.org

Usher in your holiday season with the inaugural concert of the Utah Valley Millennial Choirs & Orchestras. The group encompasses performers of all ages — including children as young as 4 years old — who will fill Abravanel Hall with classic and timeless carols celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. Among the songs are a number of beautiful arrangements of traditional carols by MCO founders Brett and Brandon Stewart, including “O Holy Night,” “Riu, Riu, Chiu,” and “Carol of the Bells.”

Liken’s “The First Christmas”

WHEN: Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays  Nov. 29 – Dec. 21 at 7:30pm
WHERE: SCERA Center, 745 S. State Street, Orem
COST: $12 adults; $10 children, seniors, and students (with ID); group rates available
TICKETS AND INFO: scera.org or (801) 225-ARTS

Liken’s “The First Christmas” returns to the SCERA Center after its sold-out world premiere last year. The heartwarming play shows three generations finding comfort and joy after a death in the family through a vividly imagined retelling of the Christmas story.

A Christmas Carol

WHEN: Mondays– Saturdays, Nov. 3–Dec. 23, at 8 p.m. with Saturday matinees
WHERE: Hale Center Theater, 225 W. 400 North, Orem
COST: $17–$21
TICKETS AND INFO: haletheater.org or 801-226-8600

Hale Center Theater in Orem’s production of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” has been seen by nearly a quarter-million people since the annual tradition began in 1990. The show features lyrics and music by Cody Hale with dialogue adapted from Charles Dickens’ original story. Returning to the stage this year is Chris H. Brower, who will be tackling the role of Ebenezer Scrooge for the 18th time.

“The Forgotten Carols”

WHEN: Friday, Dec. 6, at 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: UCCU Center at Utah Valley University, 800 West University Pkwy., Orem
COST: $13.50–$29.50
TICKETS AND INFO: forgottencarols.com

A Christmas tradition since 1991, “The Forgotten Carols” tells the tale of a holiday-hating nurse whose new patient reminds her of the wonder of Christmastime. Joining “The Forgotten Carols” creator Michael McLean on stage are his wife, Lynne, and son Jeff.

“Christmas Around the World: See the Wonder”

WHEN: Friday and Saturday, Dec. 6–7, at 7:30 p.m. with a 2 p.m. Saturday matinee
WHERE: Marriott Center at Brigham Young University, 500 E. University Pkwy., Provo
COST: $15-20, with discounts available for children or individuals with a student ID (limit two per student)
TICKETS AND INFO: arts.byu.edu

BYU’s annual “Christmas Around the World” showcases more than 200 dancers, singers, and musicians discovering the Christmas traditions of different cultures from around the world, including Bulgaria, Wales, India, Italy, Russia and Scandinavia, through song and dance. This year, the audience will follow a “professional photographer” as he “Sees the Wonder” of friendship, joy and hope through the lens of his camera.

Celebration of Christmas

WHEN: Friday and Saturday, Dec. 6–7, at 7:30 p.m. and Dec. 7, at 3 p.m.
WHERE: de Jong Concert Hall at Brigham Young University
COST: $11-$16
TICKETS AND INFO: arts.byu.edu

The BYU combined choirs and Philharmonic will feature the sounds of the holiday season in “Celebrations of Christmas.” The concert will include performances by BYU Singers, Concert Choir, BYU Men’s Chorus, Women’s Chorus and the BYU Philharmonic.

Michael Carrasco, Julia Jolley, Celeste Childs, and Kristopher Higley bring the holiday favorite "White Christmas" to life on the stage of the Lehi Arts Center Dec. 6-16. (Photo courtesy of Lehi Arts Council)

Michael Carrasco, Julia Jolley, Celeste Childs, and Kristopher Higley bring holiday favorite “White Christmas” to life on the stage of the Lehi Arts Center Dec. 6-16. (Photo courtesy of Lehi Arts Council)

“White Christmas”

WHEN: Dec. 6, 7, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, and 16 at 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Lehi Arts Center, 685 N. Center St., Lehi
COST: $8-$10 adult, $8 students and seniors
TICKETS AND INFO: lehiarts.com and on their Facebook page

A favorite Christmas movie tradition comes to the stage in Lehi this holiday season. Come let yourself go and enjoy your favorite characters as they sing and dance to Irving Berlin’s classic songs in a heart-warming tale of love and service set in the picturesque 1950s.

Lower Lights Christmas Concert

WHEN: Dec. 9, 10, 12, and 13 at 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Salt Lake Masonic Temple, 650 E. South Temple, Salt Lake City
COST: $12
TICKETS AND INFO: on their Facebook.com and eventbrite.com

On the heels of their new album, “The Lower Lights Sing Noel,” Utah folk group The Lower Lights will fill the stage for its fourth annual Christmas concert with new renditions of holiday favorites along with a handful of songs from their non-Christmas albums.

Holiday Night Live 2013

WHEN: Thursday–Saturday, Dec. 12–14, at 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Noorda Regional Theatre at Utah Valley University, 800 W. University Pkwy., Orem
COST: $10.00
TICKETS AND INFO: uvu.edu/music

Written and directed by UVU students, the production employs original songs and sketches that poke fun and give an unexpected twist to familiar holiday situations.

Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker”

WHEN: Dec. 14, 16, 19, 20, and 21 at 7:30 p.m. with Saturday matinees Dec. 14 and 21 at 2 p.m.
WHERE: Covey Center for the Arts, 425 W. Center St., Provo
COST: $19-$27
TICKETS AND INFO: coveycenter.org

Utah Regional Ballet will stage the classic Christmas ballet “The Nutcracker.” A holiday tradition for Utah Valley families for the last 35 years, the ballet features the journey of Clara, a young girl who is entertained by the Sugar Plum Fairy, and her court.

Larry H. Miller Family Community Carole Sing-Along

WHEN: Monday, Dec. 16, at 7 p.m. (Doors open at 5:30 p.m.)
WHERE: EnergySolutions Arena, 301 S. Temple, Salt Lake City
COST: Free
INFO: energysolutionsarena.com

Come experience the sights and sounds of the holidays at this free event, courtesy of the Larry H. Miller Family and Robert C. Bowden. Now in its 29th year, the Christmas Carole Sing-Along will feature emcee Big Budah along with Kurt Bestor and a 30-piece orchestra playing music specially arranged for the event. Guests will receive a special gift package including a holiday treat (while supplies last).

Timpanogos Symphony Orchestra and Ballet Utah Present “The Nutcracker”

WHEN: Monday, Dec. 16, at 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Thanksgiving Point Show Barn, 3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi
COST: $10 in advance; $12 at the door
TICKETS AND INFO: thanksgivingpoint.org

The Timpanogos Symphony Orchestra and dancers from Ballet Utah will team up to present selections from Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker.” Other Christmas favorites in the program include Anderson, Sleigh Ride, Bizet, L’Arlesienne Suite and The Polar Express.

Voice Male Christmas Concert

WHEN: Tuesday and Wednesday, Dec. 17–18, at 7 p.m.
WHERE: Thanksgiving Point Show Barn, 3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi
COST: $14 in advance; $17 the day of the performance
TICKETS AND INFO: thanksgivingpoint.org

The longtime Utah A Cappella staple Voice Male puts its unique spin on familiar Christmas tunes and throws in some extra treats in this family-friendly show that’s sure to entertain audiences of all ages.

A Joshua Creek Christmas

WHEN: Thursday and Friday, Dec. 19-20, at 7 p.m.
WHERE: Lehi Arts Center, 685 N. Center St., Lehi
COST: $6
TICKETS AND INFO: joshuacreekmusic.com and lehiarts.com

Enjoy an evening of Christmas stories and songs with award-winning Joshua Creek, a trio described as “a unique blend of country-esque music and inspirational lyrics of faith and family.” The group recently released a Christmas CD, “I Still Believe.”

Velour Christmas Special 2013

WHEN: Saturday, Dec. 21, at 8 p.m.
WHERE: Velour Live Music Gallery, 135 N. University Ave., Provo
COST: $8 cover charge; includes free hot chocolate
TICKETS AND INFO: velourlive.com

The annual Velour All-Star Christmas Special features the who’s who of local music scene each performing a song amid elaborate stage decorations. Last year’s lineup included  Ryan Innes, Mindy Gledhill, Isaac Russell, Book On Tape Worm, The Moth & the Flame, Jay William Henderson, plus members of Fictionist, Mideau, Polytype, Allred, The New Electric Sound, VanLadyLove, Blue Aces, The National Parks, and more. Seating for this intimate holiday treat is limited to 150 people on a first-come, first-served basis, so be sure to line up early to guarantee a seat. Doors open at 8 p.m.

ThePianoGuys: Home for Christmas

WHEN: Saturday, Dec. 21, at 7 p.m.
WHERE: EnergySolutions Arena, 301 S. Temple, Salt Lake City
COST: $27–$99.50
TICKETS AND INFO: energysolutionsarena.com

A true Internet sensation, Utah’s own ThePianoGuys will dazzle the hometown crowd with their signature classical-pop twist on holiday favorites from their new album, “A Family Christmas.”

26th Annual A Kurt Bestor Christmas

WHEN: Thursday, Dec. 19, at 7:30 p.m.; Friday, Dec. 20, at 8 p.m.; and Saturday, Dec. 21, at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.
WHERE: Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City
COST: $20–$47.50
TICKETS AND INFO: arttix.org

Now in its 26th year, Kurt Bestor’s annual Christmas concert promises to have a little something for everyone. In addition to his band The Collective, Emmy-award-winning Bestor will be joined by special guests Nathan Pacheco and Ryan Innes as well as a chamber orchestra.

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