The Charleston Symphony Orchestra (CSO) today announced a special gift to the community – from Christmas Eve through New Year’s Day, the CSO will offer everyone in the community a free livestream of Holiday Pops. The sold-out production was filmed live to socially distanced audiences across three performances this past weekend at the Charleston Gaillard Center.
While so many orchestras and arts organizations across the country have been forced to close their doors this year due to the pandemic, the CSO has been able to continue serving its audiences safely thanks to the Gaillard Center, and a new partnership with MUSC for testing and oversight. This is an incredible feat, but the organization felt compelled to do more.
“The CSO is fortunate to be able to present a season at all,” said Michael Smith, Executive Director of the Charleston Symphony. “But we recognize the 2020-2021 performance season has not been made accessible to the greater public and we hope to change that soon. In the meantime, we want to give back.”
The CSO’s Holiday Pops has become a Charleston tradition. In 2019, the symphony offered two performances of Holiday Pops and met attendance capacity with 3,600 seats filled. While the CSO added another live show to this year’s schedule, the organization was only able to serve about 1,000 patrons due to the impact of COVID-19 on the socially distanced hall.
Yuriy Bekker, Principal Pops Conductor of the Charleston Symphony said, “I am so happy that we are able to provide our community with music in the midst of this difficult time. I hope many families, who would otherwise not be able to experience this concert, will now be able to watch and celebrate with us. Through the power of music, we can bring joy and lift everyone’s spirits for the holidays.” The Holiday Pops livestream includes merry favorites like Leroy Anderson’s Sleigh Ride and A Christmas Festival, a suite from The Polar Express, as well as new fun arrangements and mashups such as Jingle Bells Forever and Winter’s Miracle. Santa and the Grinch join the orchestra on stage, along with several local soloists. The CSO once again featured the Charleston Pipe Band for an emotional and comforting concert finale.
The Charleston Symphony has been able to continue lifting the spirits of the community through music at a time when everyone needs hope and inspiration more than ever. The public will have free access to the CSO’s Holiday Pops concert to enjoy with family during the last week of what has been a challenging and unprecedented year for the community:
- Starting on December 24th at 8 am
- Through January 1st at 11:59 pm
- Watch Holiday Pops here
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