Not feeling the holiday spirit even amidst the twinkling lights, holiday sales and festive store fronts? Well I have something that will definitely put you in the spirit. This past weekend, after gorging myself on food and drink (and more food and even more drinks), my mom and I attended the annual holiday concert for the Seattle Men’s Chorus. Seriously, it was pretty amazing.
This year is especially important to the Chorus as it marks their 30th anniversary season. I was fortunate enough to get tickets to their opening night where they pulled out all the stops, including a guest performance by Tony Award winner Betty Buckley. Unfortunately for most, Ms. Buckley only performed the first two nights of the concert series, but those that were lucky enough to attend those shows got a real treat: a moving performance of “Memories” from a little Broadway show called “Cats.” But, I digress. Even though Betty Buckley will not be guest starring for the remainder of the holiday season, anyone who chooses to attend the show is in for an incredible experience.
As the house lights go down the enormous organ at Benaroya Hall belts out Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in d minor while the Chorus enters silently in complete synch to take their positions on the risers. From that moment on, the chills don’t stop. Santa Baby offers the perfect mix of classical holiday pieces to the more modern renditions of our favorite Christmas songs. From a beat boxed version of “Drummer Boy” to the Bollywood number “Bolly Jolly Holiday” there definitely is something for everyone. There’s even a special visit from a few famous p(m)uppets and a shout out to the King of Pop. However, all the lights and flashy choreographed numbers pale in comparison to the Chorus’s version of Silent Night. The real star of the number is ASL interpreter Kevin Gallagher, who although signs throughout the entire concert, truly brings the meaning of Silent Night into perspective with his ASL interpretation of the song. I have seen this performance three years in a row now and every time my heart stops. It is truly one of the most beautiful things I have seen.
I highly recommend y’all check out the Seattle Men’s Chorus holiday production Santa Baby. You will not be disappointed. Performances are Saturday and Sunday from December 5th through the 20th. For tickets and more information about the chorus click here.