Holiday Specials

Listen to Valley Public Radio this holiday season for a special collection of holiday programs that are sure to bring the spirit of the season into your home.

WEDNESDAY 11/27

2 pm - HANUKKAH LIGHTS
A perennial NPR favorite, Hanukkah Lights features Hanukkah stories and memoirs written by acclaimed authors expressly for the show, as read by NPR's Susan Stamberg and Murray Horwitz.

TUESDAY  12/17

10 am - LEROY ANDERSON CHRISTMAS
Hosted by conductor Leonard Slatkin and the composer's son Kurt Anderson, this special features recorded performances of Leroy Anderson’s Christmas Music with Leonard Slatkin conducting the BBC Concert Orchestra, and Leroy Anderson conducting his “Pops” Concert Orchestra.  Listeners will also hear Leroy Anderson talking about how he wrote some of his famous Christmas music and what Christmas means to him.

2 pm – THE NUTCRACKER
Told by Kevin Kline, the famous ballet by Tchaikovsky, performed by the New York City Ballet Orchestra, David Zinman conducting. The text is by Joel Meyerowitz.

Spelman Glee Club

WEDNESDAY  12/18

10 am – MILENNIUM OF MUSIC: MEDIEVAL CHRISTMAS
Two fine young Finnish ensembles, Oliphant and Vox Silentii, remind us of the glories of sacred music for the season from the middle ages.

2 pm – MUSIC OF THE BAROQUE BRASS AND CHORAL HOLIDAY CONCERT
Join host, Kerry Frumkin as he guides you through music of the 16th and 17th centuries by composers such as Boris Ord, Paul Manz, Samuel Scheidt; Claudio Monteverdi, Giovanni Gabrieli; Arvo Pärt, Benjamin Britten, Harod Darke and John Tavener among others. Many of these selections are related to the Christmas narrative, shedding light on different facets of the tale, while others offer a timely reminder that the wonder and awe the season inspires can last the entire year.  What better way to celebrate the holiday season.

THURSDAY 12/19

10 am – TINSEL TALES I
This program features stories from the NPR archives that touch on the meaning of Christmas.  David Sedaris, Bailey White, John Henry Faulk and other NPR voices, past and present, tell stories of the season, hosted by Lynn Neary.

2 pm – A CHORAL CHRISTMAS WITH STILE ANTICO
Celebrate Christmas with the sound of soaring voices. Stile Antico, the award-winning choir from London, pays a visit to St. Paul's Church on Harvard Square for a concert of radiant sacred music for the Christmas season by the most acclaimed composers of the renaissance. Hear the group's luminous blend of voices sing the intricately woven music of Thomas Tallis and William Byrd.

FRIDAY 12/20

10 am – TINSEL TALES II
NPR fills millions of homes each holiday with humor, warmth, and a host of festive voices. Continuing with the tradition of the first Tinsel Tales program, this is another collection of the best and most requested holiday stories. Joy, hope, and childhood memories overflow as NPR voices, past and present, tell stories of the season. Hosted by Lynn Neary

2 pm – CHRISTMAS WITH MOREHOUSE AND SPELMAN GLEE CLUBS
One of the great holiday traditions in America, these choirs get together to present a spine-tingling concert program, a mixture of spirituals and carols. Korva Coleman hosts.

Paul Winter

8 pm - WINTER SOLSTICE SPECIAL (2 hours)
One of NPR's most popular holiday specials returns with new talent and old friends. Malian singer Abdoulaye Diabate joins The Paul Winter Consort with Paul McCandless, the Drummers of The Fores of Nature, Gospel vocalist Theresa Thomason, and the historic reassembly of the Paul Winter Sextet in the World's Largest Gothic Cathedral -- New York's Cathedral of St. John the Divine. WNYC'S John Schaefer hosts this NPR holiday broadcast favorite. 

The Winter Solstice Celebration is a contemporary take on ancient solstice rituals, when people came together during the longest night of the year to celebrate the return of the sun, as the Earth begins its rotational cycle back towards summer. Now in its 33rd year, the performance at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, the world's largest cathedral, is New York's favorite holiday alternative to The Nutcracker and Radio City Christmas.

SATURDAY 12/21

1 pm – MILENNIUM OF MUSIC: RENAISSANCE CHRISTMAS
Recent recordings include the continuing series dedicated to Palestrina, including the great Christmas Mass O magnum mysterium.

8 pm – JAZZ AT LINCOLN CENTER CHRISTMAS
No one throws a holiday party like Jazz At Lincoln Center!  Wynton Marsalis leads an all-star lineup through a Yuletide romp.  The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra is joined by vocalists René Marie and Gregory Porter for a New Orleans style holiday treatment of I'll Be Home for Christmas, Winter Wonderland and We Three Kings. Wendell Pierce hosts.  

SUNDAY 12/22

9 am – SUNDAY BAROQUE (3 hours)
As you and your family are making final preparations for the Christmas holiday – last minute shopping, wrapping gifts, or traveling to your holiday destination -- Sunday Baroque will celebrate with warm and meaningful holiday music from a much simpler time, including selections from Johann Sebastian Bach's CHRISTMAS ORATORIO.

12:06 pm – IN THE MODE HOLIDAY SPECIAL
FM89’s Kristina Herrick hosts an early music special celebrating the holiday season.

MONDAY 12/23

10 am – VALPARAISO UNIVERSITY CHRISTMAS CONCERT
The Valparaiso University invites you, once again, to their Christmas Concert, “A Carol Festival”.  This concert features over 200 musicians in spectacular Christmas celebration, and will include the Valparaiso University Chorale, Women’s Choir, Men’s Choir, Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Concert Band. Some of the music to be performed includes portions of Handel’s Messiah, works by Benjamin Britten and John Rutter’s Gloria, Emmanuel Variants by Robert Foster for Band, Hymn to the Nativity by Brammeier, along with other traditional Christmas selections.

2 pm – JONATHAN WINTERS’, A CHRISTMAS CAROL
An updated version of a public radio tradition hosted by NPR's Susan Stamberg. Master comedian Jonathan Winters presents a distinctive reading of Dickens' holiday classic, with a special performing edition prepared by Dickens for his own presentations. Also featuring Mimi Kennedy. From NPR and KCRW.

8 pm – A JAZZ PIANO CHRISTMAS XXIX
NPR Music brings you another great concert from the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Andy Bey, Stanley Cowell, Sullivan Fortner and Michele Rosewoman perform their favorite holiday songs.

TUESDAY 12/24

10 am – A JAZZ PIANO CHRISTMAS XXIX
NPR Music brings you another great concert from the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Andy Bey, Stanley Cowell, Sullivan Fortner and Michele Rosewoman perform their favorite holiday songs.

1 pm - AN ELIZABETHAN CHRISTMAS WITH THE ROSE ENSEMBLE
The Rose Ensemble sings touching carols, soaring anthems, including a performance of Parson’s Ave Maria in collaboration with London’s a cappella group Voces 8.

8 pm – JONATHAN WINTERS’, A CHRISTMAS CAROL
An updated version of a public radio tradition hosted by NPR's Susan Stamberg. Master comedian Jonathan Winters presents a distinctive reading of Dickens' holiday classic, with a special performing edition prepared by Dickens for his own presentations. Also featuring Mimi Kennedy. From NPR and KCRW.

WEDNESDAY 12/25

10 am - MUSIC OF THE BAROQUE BRASS AND CHORAL HOLIDAY CONCERT
Join host, Kerry Frumkin as he guides you through music of the 16th and 17th centuries by composers such as Boris Ord, Paul Manz, Samuel Scheidt; Claudio Monteverdi, Giovanni Gabrieli; Arvo Pärt, Benjamin Britten, Harod Darke and John Tavener among others. Many of these selections are related to the Christmas narrative, shedding light on different facets of the tale, while others offer a timely reminder that the wonder and awe the season inspires can last the entire year.  What better way to celebrate the holiday season.

pm - HANDEL’S MESSIAH

The Cambridge Singers and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; John Rutter, conductor; Joanne Lunn, soprano; Melanie Marshall, mezzo-soprano; James Gilchrist, tenor; Christopher Purves, baritone. 

TUESDAY 12/31

7 pm – TOAST OF THE NATION
Count down to 2014 this New Year’s Eve with celebrations of midnight in different time zones. Party with live music from coast to coast and celebrate with Valley Public Radio.  Happy New Year! This year the program will make New Year's Eve stops in Boston, Washington DC, New York, Chicago, Denver and the Monterey Jazz Festival!  It’s an NPR tradition every that is perfect for the occasion. It's jazz that you can party to, all night from coast to coast, with countdowns to midnight in all four continental time zones. Spirited, improvised, grooving and swinging, each segment is a stop in a sequence of celebrations and contributing something new to the musical feast.

WEDNESDAY 1/1/14

8 am – NEW YEAR’S DAY LIVE FROM VIENNA 2014
Get ready to pop the New Year's Day champagne! The Vienna Philharmonic presents its annual salute to the waltz on New Year's Day 2014. The orchestra has invited Daniel Barenboim to welcome 2014 by conducting the annual New Year's concert, honoring his 25 years of musical collaboration with the orchestra, and his efforts to bring peace to the world through music. Hear the hit tunes of the Strauss family and others -- polkas, gallops and waltzes, live from the Musikverein, on New Year's Day from Vienna. Hosted by Laura Carlo of WCRB Classical New England, a service of WGBH.

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