Stage star and studio singer extraordinaire Debbie Gravitte is a treat for the start of the season as she joins Byron Stripling and the Columbus Jazz Orchestra for the annual Home for the Holidays concerts Dec. 5-8 at the Southern Theatre.
These concerts are always comfortable yet fresh. Tickets are $30-$52. Visit jazzartsgroup.org.
Sweet Honey in the Rock offers what amounts to a musical kaleidoscope of American musical forms. You know it's all in there, stirred around and mixed up and beautiful.
The ladies will present songs from many traditions at "Celebrating the Holydays" Thursday, Dec. 5, at the Capitol Theatre. Tickets are $20-$50. Visit capa.com.
Early Music in Columbus welcomes audience favorite Apollo's Fire for Sacrum Mysterium: A Celtic Christmas, Friday, Dec. 6, at First Congregational Church. The program of Renaissance choral music and ancient carols is augmented by a number of special guest musicians and dancers.
Tickets are $27/$22/$12. Visit earlymusicincolumbus.org.
More than just a colloquialism for a certain bearded fellow in a red suit, Holiday Pops is also the Columbus Symphony Orchestra's annual seasonal gift in music, with help from the CSO Chorus, young singers and dancers and the aforementioned bearded fellow.
Concerts are held Dec. 6-8 at the Ohio Theatre. Tickets are $25-$68. Visit columbussymphony.com.
Acoustic pop singer-songwriters Jennifer Knapp and Margaret Becker may no longer record exclusively as Christian artists, but they still celebrate Christmas.
Check out a duet album titled The Hymns of Christmas and a tour to follow, which includes a stop at Rumba Cafe Sunday, Dec. 8. Tickets are $15. Visit columbusrumbacafe.com.
Sax-man Dave Koz brings his annual Smooth Jazz Christmas show to town Sunday, Dec. 8, at the Palace Theatre. Koz always brings out the best in the business to help him out, and this year is no different, as Koz is joined by keyboardist Keiko Matsui, guitarist Jonathan Butler and singer Oleta Adams.
Tickets are $28-$65.50. Visit capa.com.
Contemporary Christian music stars Casting Crowns, Steven Curtis Chapman, Natalie Grant, Matthew West and more, accompanied by an orchestra, children's choir and a full-on multimedia experience, tell The Story, providing a holiday show with traditional carols and stories from the Bible.
The tour stops at the Schottenstein Center Monday, Dec. 9. Tickets start at $28. Visit schottensteincenter.com.
The Irish Tenors are back! Finbar Wright, Anthony Kearns and Ronan Tynan will sing familiar holiday tunes and traditional Irish melodies in concert Monday, Dec. 9, at the Palace Theatre.
Tickets are $23-$53. Visit capa.com.
The Magpie Consort offers its patented non-traditional take on a holiday musical performance in three shows at three locations Dec. 13, 14 and 20. This year's theme is Christmas in the New World.
Visit magpieconsort.org for details.
Some of central Ohio's top local acts, including Red Wanting Blue, Angela Perley and Jared Mahone, are part of A Not So Silent Night, a 10-song CD to benefit Music Loves Ohio, a music-based charity for underprivileged youth.
A concert featuring the same artists will be held at the Lincoln Theatre Saturday, Dec. 14. Visit musiclovesohio.com.
Blessed with a magnificent tenor voice, John Berry was too-often overlooked in the country music boom of the '90s. He had some hits, but none bigger than his Christmas CD, which remains the centerpiece of his legacy.
Berry brings his Christmas show to Newark's Midland Theatre Saturday, Dec. 14. Tickets are $35-$55. Visit midlandtheatre.org.
The two-part holiday special for ProMusica Chamber Orchestra returns with the Messiah Sing-Along Friday, Dec. 13, and two nights of light classics Dec. 14 and 15. The Friday and Sunday concerts are at the Southern Theatre, while Saturday's program is at the Pontifical College Josephinum.
Visit promusicacolumbus.org for ticket information.
CityMusic Columbus presents Irish Christmas in America for the ninth year Friday, Dec. 15, at the Grand Valley Dale Ballroom. This multimedia concert includes a troupe of musicians and dancers against a backdrop of seasonal visuals.
Tickets start at $13.75. Visit citymusiccolumbus.org.
For a holiday show that's a little bit country, a little bit rock and roll, you need look no further than the Donny & Marie Osmond Christmas show. Blending holiday favorites with their own hit songs and more, Donny & Marie bring A Broadway Christmas to the Schottenstein Center Thursday, Dec. 19.
Tickets start at $49.50. Visit schottensteincenter.com.
Christmas isn't over until Trans-Siberian Orchestra says it's over. The metal-and-orchestra sensation presents The Lost Christmas Eve in two shows Thursday, Dec. 26, at Nationwide Arena.
Tickets start at $41.50. Visit nationwidearena.com.
Theater & Dance
Don't forget to celebrate a demented holiday with Shadowbox Live's annual Holiday Hoopla show through Dec. 28. Not to mention the musical offering Scrooge.
For all the details, visit shadowboxlive.org.
Nip your early-season humbuggery in the bud with a trip to CAPA's annual presentation of A Christmas Carol, courtesy of the Nebraska Theatre Caravan.
The troupe will offer five shows in three days, Nov. 29-Dec. 1, at the Ohio Theatre. Tickets are $22/$32. Visit capa.com.
If the holiday season to you is nothing without visions of the Sugar Plum Fairy dancing in your head (and on stage), there are plenty of productions of The Nutcracker from which to choose.
They start with BalletMet Columbus' annual lavish extravaganza, which runs Dec. 12-24 at the Ohio Theatre. Tickets start at $31.25. Visit balletmet.org.
Need more? Central Ohio Youth Ballet (coyballet.org), New Albany Children's Ballet (newalbanycbt.org) and Columbus City Ballet School (columbuscityballetschool.com) all have youth productions planned. Plus, the Millennium Academy of Irish Dance (millenniumirishdance.com) will present its third annual The Celtic Nutcracker Saturday, Dec. 7, at the Lincoln Theatre.
Columbus Children's Theatre always has a mess of fun planned for the holiday season, and this season is no exception, with Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells on tap. The show takes on extra-special meaning with the recent passing of Junie B. creator Barbara Park.
The show continues weekends through Dec. 19. Visit columbuschildrenstheatre.org.
The silliness of Sister's Catechism: The Mystery of the Magi's Gold returns to the Capitol Theatre for two shows, Friday and Saturday, Dec. 20-21.
Tickets start at $35. Visit capa.com.