Omaha Symphony’s Christmas Spectacular
December 17th, 2013
Omaha, NE –Â Itâ€™s not just Christmas with the Symphony – itâ€™s something â€˜Spectacular!â€™[audio:https://kvnonews.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/OS-xmas-spect-web.mp3]
The Omaha Symphony continues itâ€™s traditional holiday concerts with the newly rebranded â€œChristmas Spectacular.â€ The Symphonyâ€™s Resident Conductor, Ernest Richardson, says the new name reflects the gradual shift in style for the production.
Â â€œSeveral years ago we decided that we would really focus on the timing and the visual impact of Broadway.” Richardson said. “So we’ve really shifted the program to that kind of pace. We’ve gone to a number of Broadway shows and asked, ‘What about this essential experience can we bring to the Holland that will make this show Spectacular?’â€
This also meant bringing in professional broadway directors, choreographers, dancers, and singers, which, he says, gives the orchestra great story-telling options. However, Richardson says this production takes the Broadway concept one step further.
â€œNow when you go to a Broadway show, itâ€™s great, but you never hear a full orchestra. What they call a big orchestra at itâ€™s biggest is 22, 32 people at the most, thatâ€™s just a drop in the bucket with the Omaha Symphony, thatâ€™s just the start.â€
However, it also means that the standard repertoire just wouldnâ€™t cut it.
â€œWhat weâ€™ve realized is in order for us to do the kind of show weâ€™re imagining, we just canâ€™t use stock arrangements, they donâ€™t exist for what weâ€™re trying to do.â€
The performance is, for the most part, setup into short vignettes and montages of the season. Richardson outlines one such story.
Â â€œThereâ€™s a husband and wife. Heâ€™s got this great, romantic trip planned to Vermont to go skiing at Christmas. However, their mutual friend is without a date.â€
Of course, because they like him, the husband and wife invite their friend along.
â€œThey get there, itâ€™s beautiful, itâ€™s snowy, itâ€™s a little romantic, except you have the third wheel, who they both love, but heâ€™s the third wheel.â€
Fortunately, fate has something good in store for all three of them.
â€œThereâ€™s a woman whoâ€™s watching them interact, and she recognizes this guy is alone. She comes after him, he goes after herâ€¦â€
We wonâ€™t give away the ending, but letâ€™s just say Bing Crosby fans will likely enjoy themselves. In addition to the new stories, the Christmas Spectacular will carry on several traditions from past years.
Â â€œTheres a wonderful studio in Omaha led by Anne Nagosky, who is a violinist in the orchestra, and she an amazing cadre of young students, and theyâ€™ll all come out to play, from the smallest to the most advanced. We end with â€˜O Holy Nightâ€™, and weâ€™re pulling out all the stops on that, and we have a sing-a-long, because Omaha loves to sing.â€
Of course, there will be dancing Santas.
â€œWhat Christmas more than a tap line of Santas? I donâ€™t know, itâ€™s the most Christmasy thing Iâ€™ve ever seen in my life.â€
The Omaha Symphonyâ€™s Christmas Spectacular includes six performances: one each on Thursday and Friday with a matinee and evening performances on both Saturday and Sunday. All performances are at the Holland Performing Arts Center, and more information is available at omahasymphony.org.
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