Christmas Spectacular 2015 | The Philly Pops

Christmas Spectacular 2015

David Charles Abell, Conductor

Verizon Hall, Kimmel Center for Performing Arts

300 South Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
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Dec 4-22, 2015

Lisa Vromanvocalist

Peter Richard Conteorganist

The Philly POPS Festival Chorus

Philadelphia Boys Choir

African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas Gospel Choir

Please note: this is a special event. This is not a subscription-series concert. Add Christmas Spectacular to your subscription to get the best seats and save!

Conductor’s Circle seating is not available for this event. 

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

Experience the true magic of the season with Philadelphia’s most treasured holiday musical tradition. Join internationally celebrated conductor David Charles Abell, back by popular demand for the third year, as he leads you through an all-new program of Christmas classics. This spectacular lineup of exciting musical arrangements features guest vocalist Lisa Vroman, renowned for her role as Christine in Broadway’s Phantom, over 300 musicians, remarkable choirs, and the ever-popular audience sing-along — as well as some surprises your whole family will enjoy!


Angels We Have Heard On High
Traditional, arr. Kern

Deck the Hall
Traditional, arr. Dragon

As Dew in Aprille
Benjamin Britten

This Little Babe
Benjamin Britten

Three Chanukah Songs
Traditional, arr. Healy

I Saw Three Ships
Traditional, arr. O'Neil

Bring a Torch, Jeanette Isabella
Traditional, arr. O'Neil

I'll Be Home for Christmas
Walter Kent, arr. Haynes

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
Ralph Blane, arr. O'Neil

Let It Snow, Brothers
Jule Styne, arr. Baylock

Seasonal Sounds
arr. Bass


Unto Us (Isaiah 9)
Robbie Buchanan, Larry & Lesa Bryant, arr. Alderking and Cumberland

Sweet Little Jesus Boy
MacGimsey/Burt, arr. O'Neil

'Twas the Night Before Christmas
Ken Darby, arr. Simeone

A Merry Christmas Singalong
arr. Wendel

Joy to the World
Traditional, arr. Joubert

Go Tell It On the Mountain
Traditional, arr. Joubert

Santa Claus is Comin' to Town
John Frederick Coots, arr. Walton

Mele Kalikimaka
Robert Alex Anderson, arr. Stephenson

George Frederic Handel, arr. Prout

Helpful Information

This program, including intermission, is approximately two and a half hours in length. Artists and program are subject to change without notice.

Discounted parking passes are available from select garages. For more information, please call 215.893.1999 or add a parking pass during checkout when purchasing your tickets.


We hope all of our guests will have a great time and make many memories at our concerts and events. Post your photos or videos on social media and include #phillypops for a chance to win a pair of tickets to any upcoming concert in the current or following season! Please refrain from flash photography in the concert hall. 

Enjoy the show!

Guest Artists

David Charles Abell, conductor


Conductor David Charles Abell was born in North Carolina, went to nursery school in New York and came to Philadelphia, his mother’s hometown, at the age of five. He attended Germantown Friends School for seven years, then moved to the Chicago area with his family. Having lived and worked in several different countries since that time, he now resides in London. Following three years of conducting Christmas Spectacular, he is thrilled be returning to the Philly POPS to perform some of the Broadway music that started his career back in the 1980s.

At the age of 12, David joined the Berkshire Boy Choir, which was chosen to participate in the world premiere of Leonard Bernstein’s Mass at Washington’s Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. David met Bernstein again while attending Yale University and assisted him on various projects during the last years of his life. After completing his studies at the Conservatoire Américain in France and the Juilliard School, he made his professional conducting debut in Berlin with Bernstein’s Mass. His association with Bernstein’s music continues: he recently served as Musical Supervisor for Candide in London and has been asked by Bernstein’s children to serve on the committee marking the centennial of the composer’s birth.

David is most widely known for the two Les Misérables Anniversary Concerts (10th and 25th), both of which have become PBS fund-raising perennials. He regularly appears on radio and television in the UK, most notably at the BBC Proms, London’s annual music festival at the Royal Albert Hall. These appearances have included the Richard Rodgers Centenary celebration (2002), a world premiere opera (2007), Stephen Sondheim’s 80th birthday (2010) and the War Horse Prom (2014).

Classical music, opera and musical theater all contribute to a diverse career, unified by a serious yet theatrical approach. Recent projects include his Boston Pops debut with an all-Gershwin program, two European productions of Kiss Me, Kate (in his own critical edition), live accompaniment to the film Brief Encounter with the London Philharmonic, Carmen in Kansas City, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning opera Silent Night in Detroit.

Lisa Vroman, vocalist


From Broadway to classics, on stage and in concert, Lisa Vroman has established herself as one of America's most versatile voices. She starred on Broadway, Los Angeles and San Francisco as Christine Daaé in The Phantom of the Opera and garnered theater critics’ awards for her portrayal. Her Broadway debut was in Aspects of Love and she was the first to play both Fantine and Cosette in Les Misérables.

Off Broadway and regionally, she has starred as Marian Paroo in The Music Man, Lili Vanessi in Kiss Me Kate, Birdie in Regina, Josephine in HMS Pinafore, Anna 1 in The Seven Deadly Sins, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus, and Rosabella in The Most Happy Fella. She’s appeared on PBS as Johanna in Sweeney Todd and Hey! Mr. Producer. She has also played Laurey in Oklahoma at the BBC PROMS festival), Anna Leonowens in The King and I, Mary Turner in Of Thee I Sing, and sang and danced opposite Dick Van Dyke as Mary Poppins at the Hollywood Bowl.

Lisa is a frequent guest with symphonies including San Francisco, Nashville, Philadelphia, Dallas, Utah, St. Louis, Houston, Pacific, Atlanta, Hong Kong, Cleveland, National, Florida, Cleveland, BBC Concert Orchestra, Boston Pops, Philly POPS, New York Pops as well as with the New York Festival of Song and Organist David Higgs.

She is a graduate of the Crane School of Music, State University at Potsdam (BM, Hon. Dr. of Music, Minerva Award), Carnegie-Mellon University (MFA), and is a George London Competition winner.

Recent performances have included a multi-city tour of China, An Evening of Rodgers & Hammerstein with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, a concert series with L’Opera de Rennes in France, and playing the role of Maria Callas in Terence McNally’s award winning play, Master Class.

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Peter Richard Conte, Organist


Peter Richard Conte is highly regarded as a skillful performer and arranger of organ transcriptions. He has been featured several times on National Public Radio and on ABC television’s Good Morning America and World News Tonight. His monthly radio show, The Wanamaker Organ Hour, airs on the first Sunday of each month and can be accessed online via He performs extensively throughout the United States and Canada under the management of Phillip Truckenbrod Concert Artists, and was a featured artist at the American Guild of Organists’ National Convention in 2002, and at the International Organ Festival in Aosta, Italy, in September 2004. In 2013, the Philadelphia Music Alliance honored him with a bronze plaque on the Avenue of the Arts’ Walk of Fame. He has performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra, The Philly POPS, and with Delaware and Allentown Symphonies.

Slideshow  |  7 Photos
Christmas Spectacular Slideshow
"If you haven't been to the 'Christmas Spectacular!'... you don't know what you're missing."
— Delaware County News
Program Book

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