Continuing a holiday tradition, "Christmas with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir," featuring Renée Fleming and Claire Bloom, comes to KUED-Channel 7 this month. The program airs Sunday, December 10, at 7 p.m. and again Sunday, December 20, at 7 p.m. and on Christmas Eve at 8 p.m. It also airs nationwide on PBS December 20 and 24.
The world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the Orchestra at Temple Square are joined by opera superstar and two-time Grammy Award-winner Renée Fleming; acclaimed British actress, Claire Bloom; dancers from the University of Utah Department of Ballet; and the Bells on Temple Square, for the annual holiday concert.
This year's concert features solo numbers from Ms. Fleming, including "What Child is This" and "Poor Mary." Ms. Fleming performs other popular favorites with the Choir, including "Angels from the Realms of Glory," "I'll Be Home for Christmas," and "Joy to the World." Ms. Bloom reads the Christmas story from the Book of Luke. The High-Definition, Surround-Sound production was recorded during four sold-out concerts performed in December 2005, in the state-of-the-art Conference Center in Salt Lake City, to combined audiences of approximately 85,000.
The holiday concert with Renée Fleming is the third Christmas with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir program to be broadcast on PBS. KUED's previous projects for PBS have included the 2005 Christmas with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir featuring Audra McDonald and Peter Graves, and Christmas with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, featuring Frederica von Stade and Bryn Terfel. Each program was one of the most watched Christmas shows on PBS at its premier. The executive producer for KUED is John Howe.
Renowned for her exquisite voice, stylistic versatility, and captivating stage presence, American soprano Renée Fleming is recognized as one of today's great artists. Acclaimed as "the gold standard of soprano sound," the two-time Grammy Award winner's vocal artistry is sought after on the world's most distinguished stages.
London-born Claire Bloom made her first stage appearance with the Oxford Repertory Company at the age of 16. Her acting career has spanned stage, film, and television for decades. Ms. Bloom was most recently seen on Broadway at the Ethel Barrymore Theater as Clytemnestra in Electra, for which she was nominated for a Tony Award, and in London at the prestigious Almeida Theatre in Conversations after a Burial.
The 360-voice Mormon Tabernacle Choir, conducted by Craig Jessop, traces its roots to the arrival of pioneers in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. The longest continuous network broadcast in the world, it has been a weekly American tradition since 1929 and is carried on more than 2,000 radio, television and cable outlets worldwide. The Choir performs regularly with the Orchestra at Temple Square, a 110-member symphony - all volunteer, like the Choir - formed in 1999. Craig Jessop and Mack Wilberg conduct the Choir and Orchestra, with many of the arrangements for the concert done by Wilberg.
Christmas with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, featuring Renée Fleming and Claire Bloom, is made possible in part by Ronald C. and Kaye Gunnell, the Sorenson Legacy Foundation, the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation, the University of Utah, and the contributing members of KUED.
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