Saint Joseph Symphony’s holiday show returns, its first with music director Christopher Kelts

Posted on: December 17, 2021

“Saint Joseph Symphony director Christopher Kelts knows how much the holidays mean to people,” writes Andrew Gang in Wednesday’s (12/15) St. Joseph News-Press (MO). “For his first holiday show with the symphony [on Dec. 18], he wants to make sure he nails it. ‘This is usually the concert where a larger percentage of the audience has maybe never heard a live symphony orchestra before,’ he said. ‘I love the possibility of making that connection and sort of creating a fan for life of symphonic music from our audience.’ [For] the first symphony holiday performance since 2019, Kelts said he wanted to be sure to walk the line between the traditional expectations … and giving audiences something new…. [The program] will include ‘A Christmas Festival Sleigh Ride,’ ‘Sleigh Ride,’ ‘Festive Sounds of Chanukah,’ ‘Fantasia on Greensleeves,’ ‘White Christmas’ and a tribute to ‘Little Drummer Boy’ writer and St. Joseph native, Katherine Kennicott Davis. ‘She … went on to become this arranger and composer. And in the early 20th century, that’s kind of a big deal, because that was not a career path that was encouraged among women …,’ Kelts said…. As is tradition, the holiday show will conclude with a sing-along.”