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Celebrate the holidays with WKAR

WKAR Radio Holiday Specials 2021

Winter Background With Fir, Branches, Cones, and Snow
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Celebrate the holiday season with WKAR Radio!

On 90.5 FM | Tune in and enjoy a variety of holiday classics and seasonal favorites.

NOVEMBER 2021

25 | Thu | 9 a.m.

Turkey Confidential
During The Splendid Table’s annual Thanksgiving show, host Francis Lam takes calls and comes to the rescue of Thanksgiving cooks, kitchen helpers, and dinner guests during the biggest cooking day of the year. Record your Thanksgiving questions for The Splendid Table when you leave a voice message at (800) 537-5252, and hear their answers Thanksgiving morning.

25 | Thu | 11 a.m.
Every Good Thing
An hour of stories and music to celebrate Thanksgiving. Host Andrea Blain and classical music fans from all around the country take some time to give thanks and celebrate one of life’s most meaningful gifts: music.

28 | Sun | 4 p.m.
Candles Burning Brightly
This is a one-hour celebration of Chanukah, the Jewish Festival of Lights, with an exploration of Chanukah foods and traditional activities. Host Mindy Ratner shares performances by the Zamir Chorale of Boston, harpist Andrea Stein, the New England Conservatory Chorus and Orchestra, & more.

DECEMBER 2021

6 | Mon | 6 p.m.

Hanukkah Lights 2021
This NPR favorite returns with the best of the best Hanukkah Lights stories from the last 30 years. Hosted by Susan Stamberg and Murray Horwitz.

18 | Sat | 8 p.m.
MSU College of Music’s A Jazzy Little Christmas
The Artist-Faculty members of the Michigan State University College of Music are led by concert guide, double-bassist & Director of Jazz Studies Rodney Whitaker as they perform many holiday classics with more (instrumental) licks than Rudolph & Co.’s salt cubes.

18 | Sat | 9 p.m.
Jazz Night in America, A Holiday Celebration
This holiday, Jazz Night in America will present popular jazz artists sharing their seasonal music from forthcoming holiday albums. Enjoy first-person stories and memories from the musicians and hear festive originals and new takes on classics in this special episode. More details to come soon. Christian McBride hosts.

19 | Sun | 9 p.m.
The Thistle & Shamrock Presents ‘A Child’s Christmas in Wales’
In this program, Welsh musician, Cerys Matthews, narrates excerpts from the Dylan Thomas holiday classic, set to music that she created and recorded with her collaborator Mason Neely. One reviewer wrote: "Dylan’s words are so deliciously descriptive to begin with, and Matthews’ lilting Welsh accent, and deep understanding of the culture illuminates them further. Her love of Dylan’s poetry shines throughout, and serves to make it accessible to a wide audience." Hosted by Fiona Ritchie.

20 | Mon | Noon
Welcome Christmas with VocalEssence
Welcome Christmas is a perennial Christmas favorite from VocalEssence, one of the world’s premiere choral groups, conducted by Philip Brunelle. An hour of traditional carols and new discoveries, including the world premiere of two carols from the annual Christmas Carol Contest. Hosted by John Birge.

21 | Tue | Noon
Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square
The sounds of the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square floated into many homes during the holidays in the '60s & '70s on Goodyear and Firestone albums, bringing lush renditions of favorite Christmas carols. Those warm memories and feelings come right back again in this holiday special. The choir continues its tradition of great artistry with touching arrangements of familiar carols, and surprises with lesser-known melodies that are fast becoming the new classics. Hosted by Andrea Blain.

21 | Tue | 8 p.m.
A Paul Winter Solstice
Celebrate the return of the sun—and the warming of the heart with Paul Winter's Winter Solstice Celebration. On the darkest night of the year, we head back to New York's Cathedral of St. John the Divine to hear a performance of The Paul Winter Consort and the glorious Cathedral Pipe Organ. John Schaefer hosts.

22 | Wed | Noon
All is Bright: Contemplative Music for Christmas
An hour of gorgeous, contemplative music related to the Christmas season and its symbolism. This program uses sacred choral music grouped in a way to tell the traditional Christmas story by way of songs about angels, the star, and the manger scene. Featured artists include Cambridge Singers, Cantus, and Chanticleer. Hosted by Lynne Warfel.

23 | Thu | Noon
A Chanticleer Christmas
This one-hour program of holiday favorites, new and old, will be presented live in concert by Chanticleer, the superb 12-man ensemble known as "an orchestra of voices." Chanticleer is one of the premiere vocal ensembles in the nation. The ensemble has won two Grammys and is a member of the American Classical Music Hall of Fame. Hosted by Steve Staruch.

24 | Fri | 9 a.m.
Welcome Christmas with VocalEssence
Welcome Christmas is a perennial Christmas favorite from VocalEssence, one of the world’s premiere choral groups, conducted by Philip Brunelle. An hour of traditional carols and new discoveries, including the world premiere of two carols from the annual Christmas Carol Contest. Hosted by John Birge.

24 | Fri | 10 a.m.
A Festival of 9 Lessons and Carols, Live from the Choir of King’s College Cambridge
The audience will share in a live, world-wide Christmas Eve broadcast of a service of Biblical readings, carols, and related seasonal ‘classical’ music (anthems a cappella and with organ accompaniment, and congregational hymns), presented by one of the world’s foremost choirs of men and boys and performed in an acoustically and architecturally renowned venue. Hosted by Michael Barone.

24 | Fri | Noon
St. Olaf Christmas Festival 
F. Melius Christiansen started the Christmas Festival in 1911 at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota as a simple service in word and song for students, faculty, friends and family. In the 109 years since, it has grown to include more than 500 student musicians who share their gifts. Hosted by Valerie Kahler.

24 | Fri | 2 p.m.
MSU College of Music’s Songs of Comfort and Joy
A celebratory return of choral singing as members of MSU Choral Union, University Chorale, and State Singers join the MSU Symphony Orchestra for a concert of inspiring and uplifting music. The program features popular choruses from Handel’s Messiah and perennial choral-orchestral selections including Brahm’s “How lovely is thy dwelling place,” Mozart’s “Ave verum corpus,” Mendelssohn’s “Thanks be to God,” and other favorites as conducted by Professor David Rayl. Hosted by Jamie Paisley

24 | Fri | 9 p.m.
A Festival of 9 Lessons and Carols, Live from the Choir of King’s College Cambridge
The audience will share in a live, world-wide Christmas Eve broadcast of a service of Biblical readings, carols, and related seasonal ‘classical’ music (anthems a cappella and with organ accompaniment, and congregational hymns), presented by one of the world’s foremost choirs of men and boys and performed in an acoustically and architecturally renowned venue. Hosted by Michael Barone.

25 | Sat | 1 p.m.
A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, Live from the Choir of King’s College Cambridge
The audience will share in a live, world-wide Christmas Eve broadcast of a service of Biblical readings, carols, and related seasonal ‘classical’ music (anthems a cappella and with organ accompaniment, and congregational hymns), presented by one of the world’s foremost choirs of men and boys and performed in an acoustically and architecturally renowned venue. Hosted by Michael Barone.

25 | Sat | 3 p.m.
A Choral Christmas With Stile Antico
Celebrate Christmas with the sound of soaring voices. Stile Antico, the award-winning choir from London, pays a visit to St. Paul’s church on Harvard Square for a concert of radiant sacred music for the Christmas season by the most acclaimed composers of the renaissance. Hear the group’s luminous blend of voices sing the intricately woven music of Thomas Tallis and William Byrd. Hosted by Cathy Fuller of WGBH. Presented by NPR Music.

25 | Sat | 4 p.m.
An Afro Blue Christmas
A very special holiday concert with Howard University's premiere vocal ensemble Afro Blue and special guest pianist Cyrus Chestnut.  Hear the a-cappella group perform a variety of holiday songs including African-American spirituals, jazz and pop tunes, and classical repertoire.  The joyous celebration includes one of a kind arrangements of traditional holiday songs plus new compositions…music perfect for the holidays and the spirit of Christmas. Hosted by Michele Norris.

JANUARY 2022

1 | Sat | 11 a.m.

New Year’s Day From Vienna 2022
The ever popular annual New Year’s Day Concert will be performed by the Vienna Philharmonic under the baton of Maestro Daniel Barenboim. With this concert it is not only the desire of the Vienna Philharmonic to provide musically definitive interpretations of the masterworks of this genre, but also, as musical ambassadors of Austria, to send people all over the world a New Year's greeting in the spirit of hope, friendship and peace. Hosted by WBUR's Lisa Mullins.

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