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Soulful Symphony concert celebrates the spirit of the holiday season

12/13/2013, 6 a.m.
Darin Atwater is the founder and conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra's Soulful Symphony. Courtesy Photos/The Hippodrome Foundation, Inc.

— On Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 8 p.m. at the Hippodrome Theatre, Hippodrome Foundation, Inc. (HFI) partner Soulful Symphony with Darin Atwater heralds in the season’s festivities with “Soulful Holidays.” The concert captures the magic and wonder of the holidays with original orchestral arrangements, magnificent vocal performances, spectacular dancing, and the incredible sounds of Soulful Symphony. The concert reflects a broad range of holiday music while incorporating rousing renditions of Christmas carols and traditional holiday favorites.

"Soulful Holidays" is a true celebration of the spirit of the season, as Darin Atwater, Soulful Symphony's founder and artistic director, continues to reinvent the symphony orchestra to make it more accessible for his audience. To capture the feeling of the holidays, Atwater increased the orchestra's percussion section to include sleigh bells and traditional African Drums, which will be perfect for the concert’s Kwanzaa set showcasing African Roots music. The audience will also be treated to the rarely heard orchestral adaptations of Duke Ellington's Nutcracker Suite accompanied by two dancers from the acclaimed Dance Theater of Harlem. Atwater has hinted that he may leave the conductor's podium during the performance to sit at the piano and sing a few carols. Of course, concert goers can expect to hear all the beloved Christmas favorites such as Jingle Bells, Blue Christmas, Little Drummer Boy, and O’ Holy Night— featuring various solo artists with new orchestrations for this Soulful Symphony concert.

Atwater says, “It is exciting to present a holiday concert; everyone loves and recognizes the music and can appreciate the beauty of hearing it played and arranged for an 85 piece orchestra. It is a richness that truly brings out the majesty of the music of this season.”

Atwater will also welcome to the stage to perform, students from Lansdowne High School’s orchestra and chorus; these students are part of the HFI-Soulful Symphony Artist-in-Residence program which is an HFI sponsored program that enables the students to study with Soulful Symphony musicians on an on-going basis throughout the school year. Olive Waxter, Director of Hippodrome Foundation, Inc. says, “Soulful Symphony musicians directly impact students’ lives in Baltimore. Having in programs in schools gives the students something to look forward to – increases attendance, attention and has an all around positive impact on arts education and appreciation.”

Ticket Information: Individual concert tickets range from $25 to $250 and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com (410-547-SEAT) or at the Hippodrome Box Office Monday – Friday from 11AM – 3PM. Groups of 10 or more people can save 20% by calling 443-703-2401.