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Falletta’s favorites add sparkle to ‘JoAnn’s Classical Christmas’

Snow might be slow in coming to Buffalo, but at Kleinhans Music Hall, the trees are up and the music is glittering. The stage is set, in other words, for “JoAnn’s Classical Christmas” on Dec. 11 and 12. The concert features wintry favorites hand-picked and conducted by the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s music director, JoAnn Falletta.

The snow-covered spirit of Imperial Russia is reflected in Rimsky-Korsakov’s Polonaise from “Christmas Eve,” which evokes yuletide festivities in the palace of the czar. Glazunov and Vivaldi both wrote “The Four Seasons,” and the audience will hear “Winter” from both of them. The Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus will be turned out in festive force, primed to sing “The Birth of Christ” from Mendelssohn’s “Christus” and the dazzling opening chorus from Bach’s “Christmas Oratorio,” set off by brass and booming timpani. Music by Jerry Herman and Leroy Anderson adds a whimsical touch, and so does the dreamy finale from Edward Elgar’s “The Starlight Express.” The Christmas spirit culminates, of course, in Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus.”

The concert takes place at 10:30 a.m. Dec. 11 and 8 p.m. Dec. 12 in Kleinhans Music Hall. Tickets are $39.50-$89.50.

And when the winter sun has set on that fun, the popular kids’ concert “Jingle Bell Jam” takes place at 2:30 p.m. Dec. 13 at Kleinhans. Stefan Sanders, associate conductor, will conduct favorite holiday tunes and music from “The Polar Express.” Santa promises to join the party. Tickets to “Jingle Bell Jam” are $27.50.

For info on BPO events, call 885-5000.

– Mary Kunz Goldman

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