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Rock holiday

Fourteen vocalists, 14 musicians and two narrators. A massive, Pink Floyd-style stage set. This is not going to be a quiet, laid-back Christmas show.

Since he founded the band 10 years ago, Trans-Siberian Orchestra mastermind Paul O'Neill has been marrying his love of bombastic progressive and symphonic rock to the grandiosity of opera. Over the past several years, O'Neill and company have taken on Christmas music, bringing a dramatic, metal-tinged flair to traditional holiday sounds.

Initially, many in the industry thought O'Neill had flipped his lid when he started making noises about "Christmas metal" and the like. Audiences, however, ate it up immediately. The Trans-Siberian Orchestra has indeed become an international sensation, which is exactly what O'Neill planned on it being.

On Sunday, O'Neill and his considerable cast -- including Williamsville native and recent Buffalo Music Hall of Fame inductee Bob Kinkel -- bring their rock-holiday review to HSBC Arena for two shows. The matinee begins at 3 p.m.; the second show starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $39.50 to $49.50 and can be found now at the HSBC Arena box office or through Tickets.com.

-- Jeff Miers

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