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Trans-Siberian Orchestra announces virtual show for 2020 holidays

By: Bob D’Angelo, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
Updated: October 24, 2020 – 6:08 PM

The music of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra is a Christmastime tradition, but the coronavirus pandemic has changed the holiday landscape. Still, the venerable orchestra will bring its classic version of Christmas carols to its many fans through a virtual show.

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The orchestra will deliver a 90-minute virtual performance, “Christmas Eve and Other Stories Live In Concert,” on Dec. 18 at 8 p.m. EST, according to the TSO website.

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Tickets for the show, which will originate from Nashville without people in the audience, will cost $30 and went on sale Thursday on the TSO website. For fans unable to watch the livestreamed event on Dec. 18, it can be streamed on-demand through midnight on Dec. 20.

In a typical year, the group’s East and West touring orchestras perform around 120 live shows — sometimes two in one day — for nearly a million fans, USA Today reported.

In 2019, the two touring orchestras visited 66 cities over seven weeks, according to Forbes. The shows grossed $46.8 million and sold 706,000 tickets between Dec. 1 and Dec. 30, 2019, according to Billboard.

This year will provide a different challenge. The two touring bands will perform together for the first time since they were created in 2000.

“This is really new for me,” TSO musical director and lead guitarist Al Pitrelli told USA Today. “There’s been a lot of negativity in 2020. I didn’t want to leave this year without doing something special. I promise this is going to be completely different.”

>> Trans-Siberian Orchestra cancels 2020 tour due to coronavirus pandemic

Bryan Hicks will serve as the show’s narrator, with Pitrelli and keyboardist Derek Wieland serving as musical directors, USA Today reported.

“At the end of the day, we still get to do what we love,” Pitrelli said. “No matter what, we wanted to do something. Like pretty much everyone else, we had to adapt, overcome and improvise. Normal went out the window really quick. We thought briefly about doing a drive-in show, but it would have been too cold.”

The orchestra will play fan favorites such as “Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24,” “O’ Come All Ye Faithful,” “Good King Joy,” “Promises To Keep,” “This Christmas Day,” “Ornament” and “Old City Bar.”

“The story has always been the centerpiece of the show,” Pitrelli told USA Today. “It’s going to be a very up-close and personal performance. No one will have a bad seat.”

“We’re excited to keep the TSO tradition alive in a new way through this 90-minute livestream special,” TSO said on its website.

© 2020 Cox Media Group

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