Philadelphia’s performing arts venues celebrate the holidays with a season of delightful programming this year.
Head to the grand Avenue of the Arts for traditional seasonal performances including The Nutcracker by the Pennsylvania Ballet and holiday songs from The Philadelphia Orchestra.
The city’s smaller stages also capture the holiday spirit with new twists on old classics, original works and even a bit of humor to close out the year.
Put on your dancing shoes, warm up your singing voice and enjoy a few of the best shows the city has to offer during the holidays.
November 7, 2017 – January 7, 2018
The Tony Award-winning musical about a brave little girl and the millionaire who’d become her dad is just the heart-warmer for the season for those who believe love is the best gift of all. The Walnut Street Theatre tells the set-in-1930s tale and ends on a high note with A New Deal for Christmas.
December 8-31, 2017 (select dates)
The Pennsylvania Ballet returns to the grand Academy of Music for an elegant (yet kid-friendly) Philadelphia dance tradition. Tchaikovsky’s iconic score pairs with lavish sets, lavish costumes and enchanting performances — by the dancers, members of The Philadelphia Orchestra and Philadelphia Boys Choir. This year’s sensory-friendly performance takes place December 27.
November 25 – December 23, 2017
The historic Walnut Street Theatre invites children to a just-for-them rendition of Charles Dickens’ famed tale of Ebenezer Scrooge and the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future during this one-hour performance.
December 2-19, 2017 (select dates)
Maestro Michael Krajewski takes the baton to lead the Philly POPS in a newly re-imagined, always beloved concert featuring vocalist Justin Hopkins, the Philadelphia Boys Choir, the Philly POPS Festival Chorus and the African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas Gospel Choir, as well as a musical performance of How The Grinch Stole Christmas.
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This “Big Five” orchestra offers spirited performances throughout December in the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts’ Verizon Hall. Among them:
Christmas Kids Spectacular: December 2, 2017
This always-popular (and often sold-out) performance gives little ones a taste of the classics, encourages singing along and provokes gasps of joy when St. Nick arrives.
Glorious Sounds of Christmas: December 14-17, 2017
Bramwell Tovey conducts this tradition inspired by the 1962 album by legendary conductor Eugene Ormandy.
More about Glorious Sounds of Christmas
Messiah: December 21-22, 2017
The players play and the Philadelphia Symphonic Choir sings the Handel stunner.
More about Messiah
New Year’s Eve Concert: December 31, 2017
Ring in the New Year with The Philadelphia Orchestra. The concert ends before midnight, so you’ll still be able to catch the SugarHouse New Year’s Eve Fireworks on the Waterfront!
More about New Year’s Eve Concert
December 18-19, 2017
The Moscow Ballet adds a third perspective on Christmas’ best-known ballet during this 25th Anniversary Tour performance at the Annenberg Center. This Nutcracker comes with live nesting dolls and puppets and brilliant costumes.
A Soulful Christmas: December 12, 2017
Gospel singer Lady Tramaine Hawkins joins hundreds of performers from local community choirs for an uplifting evening of gospel numbers, spirituals and holiday favorites at this annual holiday performance at the Kimmel Center.
Tuba Christmas: December 17, 2017
A worldwide holiday tradition since the 1970s, Tuba Christmas marks its 15th anniversary of Philadelphia performances. Tubas, sousaphones and euphoniums get decked out in tinsel and ornaments as more than 100 local instrumentalists perform a selection of seasonal tunes.
More on Tuba Christmas
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A post shared by Douglas Famy (@famylicious) on Mar 19, 2016 at 4:09pm PDT
November 30 – December 2, 2017
The 120-voice Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus performs Hollywood’s greatest holiday hits. Film score selections on the program hail from Babes in Toyland, Home Alone, The Polar Express, White Christmas and more.
November 24-25, 2017
The Rock School for Dance Education, one of the nation’s most renowned pre-professional ballet training programs, puts a Colonial spin on a holiday classic with its student-populated, undeniably professional-grade, 70-minute Nutcracker.
Book the Visit Philly Overnight Hotel Package for stays through November 30, 2018 and get FREE hotel parking as well as free tickets to the iconic Philadelphia Museum of Art, a $25 gift card to the must-visit Reading Terminal Market, free Philly-themed mini-golf at Franklin Square and a $10 Lyft credit.