The Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square will not perform live concerts for a public audience this Christmas season, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced Friday.
Fans of the choir’s Yuletide performances instead will be able to view a two-hour special, “20 Years of Christmas With The Tabernacle Choir.”
“Every year, the Christmas concert by The Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square is a gift to the world from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” recently installed choir President Mike Leavitt said in a news release. “This year, our gift is this 20th anniversary special with highlights from two decades of concerts celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. Since COVID precluded holding and recording a live Christmas concert last December, we are extremely pleased to continue our decades-long tradition of Christmas programming on PBS, with this exceptional broadcast.”
To create the program, the choir picked material from the past two decades of performances, music director Mack Wilberg said in the release. “The difficult part was selecting what should be included, given the wealth of material we had to work with.”
Tony Award-winning actor Brian Stokes Mitchell will narrate the special and be featured as a guest soloist.
The special will air on PBS on Monday, Dec. 13, at 7 p.m. and will run again on Christmas Eve at 6 p.m. BYUtv will air the special Thursday, Dec. 16, at 7 p.m.; Sunday, Dec. 19, at 5 and 7 p.m.; Christmas Eve at 8 and 10 p.m.; and Christmas Day at 1:35 and 3:35 p.m.
On-demand streaming will be available at pbs.org/tabernaclechoir after Dec. 13 and on byutv.org after Dec. 16.
The Tabernacle Choir canceled its concert last year due to the pandemic.
In December, the choir also will begin work on next year’s Christmas TV special.
Actor-singer Megan Hilty, who appears in NBC’s musical drama “Smash,” and actor-producer Neal McDonough, how has been seen in more than 100 films, including “Captain America” and “Forever Strong,” will join the choir for the closed taping sessions.