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CRITIC'S PICKS | Classical Events You Absolutely Need To See This Holiday: Dec. 20 – January 2

By Michael Vincent on December 20, 2021

Classical music and opera events for the weeks of December 20, 2021 to January 2, 2022
Classical music and opera events for the weeks of December 20, 2021 to January 2, 2022

This is a list of amazing concerts we are attending, wishing we could attend, or thinking about attending between December 20 – January 2, 2022. For more details on what’s happening in Toronto, visit our calendar here.

Special note: Due to ongoing concerns over the COVID-19 Omicron variant, Ontario has mandated capacity limits to indoor performing arts venues, limiting ticket sales. While indoor events at venues with under 1000 seats are currently unaffected, check in-person events for updated information just in case.

In-Person

The National Ballet Of Canada | The Nutcracker (Sold Out) [CANCELLED]

📅 Tuesday — December 21, 2021, 7 p.m. ET (repeats through Dec. 31)
📍 LINK
💸 $25+

The National Ballet’s Nutcracker continues to be Ludwig Van’s Holiday best-best this season. Due to the new Ontario capacity limits to indoor performing arts venues, all events are sold out. Some previously sold tickets will have also been cancelled. We are told, all tickets holders with cancelled tickets will be notified by email. | Details

Mirvish Productions | Come From Away

📅 Tuesday — December 21, 2021, 7 p.m. ET (repeats through Mar. 13)
📍 LINK
💸 $69+

Come From Away is back! The good news is that Mirvish has confirmed that performances are continuing as scheduled (for now). With the capacity limits, it appears sold out through January 2, 2022, but we will update here if anything changes. | Details

Mirvish Productions | Jesus Christ Superstar

📅 Tuesday — December 21, 2021, 7 p.m. ET (repeats through Jan. 2)
📍 LINK
💸 $39+

The iconic musical phenomenon Jesus Christ Superstar continues this holiday on its tour stop in Toronto. If you want to feel old, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s legendary rock opera opened 50 years ago on Broadway on Oct. 12, 1971. While same-day rush tickets are $29, demand has been very high, so we recommend you book ahead. | Details

Toronto Operetta Theatre | A Waltz Dream

📅 Wednesday — December 29, 2021, 8 p.m. ET (repeats Dec. 31, Jan. 2 & 4. )
📍 LINK
💸 $75+

Opera lovers, you’re getting a late-Christmas gift this year — a Canadian premiere of A Waltz Dream by Oscar Straus. Originally premiering in Vienna in 1907, A Waltz Dream was the show that put Straus on the map. To differentiate himself from the more famous Johann Strauss II, this is Straus with one “s”, not two! | Details

Roy Thomson Hall/Attila Glatz Concert Productions | Salute To Vienna

📅 Tuesday — January 1, 2022, 2:30 p.m. ET
📍 LINK
💸 $75+

Every year, Salute To Vienna has a timelessness about it. It’s also perfect for those with a taste for European flair. If you’ve never been before, you can expect plenty of singers, dancers, and a full symphony orchestra. | Details

Online

Canzona Chamber Players | The Ninth Annual Elizabeth Krehm Memorial Concert: Mahler & Beethoven on Boxing Day (online)

📅 Wednesday — December 26, 2021, 5:50 p.m. ET
📍 LINK
💸 Free!

Canzona Chamber Players are presenting the 9th Annual Memorial Concert for Elizabeth Krehm benefiting St. Michael’s Hospital. Filmed at the Arts & Letters Club in Toronto, you’ll hear Gustav Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen and Beethoven’s Symphony 7. Free to view, but consider a donation to St. Michael’s Hospital Foundation in Elizabeth Krehm’s name. | Details

Toronto Mendelssohn Choir | Festival of Carols

📅 Runs through Dec. 25
📍 LINK
💸 $20+

No matter how you celebrate the holidays, going to a Christmas concert is one of our favourite ways to spend time with loved ones. Toronto Mendelssohn Choir annual Festival of Carols continues online this week. The Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra will join the choir to perform carols from Bach, Andrew Balfour, Sally Beamish, Paul Halley, etc. | Details

Art of Time Ensemble | To All A Good Night 6

📅 Runs through Dec. 31
📍 LINK
💸 $22

Now in its sixth edition, To All A Good Night includes music from Stevie Wonder, John Prine, Stephen Colbert & Elvis Costello, and Duke Ellington, and featuring performances by Jackie Richardson, Jessica Mitchell, Liam Russell, David Wall, and Tom Wilson. | Details

Canadian Opera Company | In Winter (online)

📅 Runs through June 18, 2022
📍 LINK
💸 Free!

Premiering last week, the COC celebrates the holidays’ arrival with Vivaldi’s famous “Winter” section from The Four Seasons and more. It also includes a premiere by Ontario-based composer Ian Cusson, titled In Winter.

The Elora Singers | Radiant Dawn: A Festival of Carols

📅 Runs through January 7, 2022.
📍 LINK
💸 $20+

While The Elora’s Singers planned in-person concerts on Dec 21 & 22 have been cancelled this year due to the COVID-19 variant, there’s still the online edition. The concert is based on the repertoire from their new Radiant Dawn CD, with poetry readings and some other surprises. | Details

Against the Grain Theatre | Messiah/Complex

📅 Runs through January 9, 2022.
📍 LINK
💸 Free!

AtG have brought back the much talked about Messiah/Complex for the holidays. If you missed it last year, now is your chance to see what all the fuss was about. We were mightily impressed with it. Take a deep dive here.

Sinfonia Toronto | Beethoven@251

📅 Runs through January 9, 2022
📍 LINK
💸 $19+

Sinfonia Toronto’s continues their timely nod to our namesake, Herr Ludwig, for his 251st birthday. The program is all about the music he inspired from the Romantics: Chopin Piano ConcertoSymphony No. 8, and more. Pianist Dmitri Levkovich is soloist. | Details

[Last updated Dec 22, 2021]

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Michael Vincent
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