CSO’s Holiday Pops concerts features special guests

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Carmel Symphony Orchestra Music Director Janna Hymes began a mission to make the traditional holiday concerts more pops-oriented last year.

“It’s fun for everybody,” Hymes said. “We want everyone to have a great time and get into the holiday spirit. We know there is a lot going on and people are inundated with things to do at the holidays, but this is pretty fun, and then you walk outside and the Christklndmarkt is going on.

“It’s a great time of the year at the Palladium, and the show is very festive.”

The Carmel Symphony Orchestra’s Holiday Pops concerts are set from 3 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 14 at the Palladium at the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel. The afternoon show is geared toward children with Santa and Mrs. Claus.

“I decided to bring in a mix of local talent, and I think it’s going to be fantastic,” Hymes said. “It’s really a concert that we really enjoy playing. It’s so different from what we do with our masterworks. In fact, we are looking at increasing our pops offerings. We know the community really likes those concerts.”

The Carmel High School’s Ambassadors, the mixed show choir, will perform.

“I haven’t worked with them before, so I think it’s really going to be fun to bring them to the Palladium because they are just so beloved by the community,” Hymes said. “They are great singers. They are doing some fantastic music. One is a cappella and the rest is with the orchestra.”

Indianapolis singer Sarah Scharbrough is another special guest.

“She is a jazz singer and has a fantastic following,” Hymes said. “She is a really soulful singer. We are arranging some music for her to sing.”

Scharbrough will be joined by her bass and guitar players and a drummer.

“That’s going to be exciting to have her band performing with the orchestra,” Hymes said. “She is going to be doing some great music. She is singing ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town,’ ‘Come All Ye Faithful’ and a piece she wrote called ‘Shine’ with the Ambassadors. There is a real mix of music.”

The Wright Brothers also will perform with the CSO. Hymes said she worked with the band for Pedcor Pops “Salute to Heroes” concert in January.

“This might be one of their last performances together,” Hymes said. “They’ve been around for (nearly) 50 years and they’re looking at slowing things down. It’s been a long time and they are all different things. They sing some arrangements that they had arranged for an orchestra that they did many years ago.”

The Wright Brothers include Tom and Tim Wright and John McDowell. The group formed in 1972.

“We really like the idea of collaboration. We are working with other artists and other organizations,” Hymes said. “It’s a way to increase audiences and create something new for the community.”

CSO will join Actors Theatre of Indiana for a production of “Sweeney Todd” Feb. 21-22, 2020, at the Palladium.

The performances run two hours with an intermission. For more, visit carmelsymphony.org.

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