CHRISTMAS, Christmas and more Christmas events stop Charles Hutchinson from staying by a winter fire as writing cards must wait.
Christmas collaboration of the week: The York Waits & Ebor Singers, In Dulci Jubilo, St Mary’s Church, Beverley, today, 12 noon; St Olave’s Church, Marygate, York, tomorrow, 7.30pm
SEASONAL music from Renaissance Europe for choir and period instruments, celebrating the Christmas story in the grand works of Michael Praetoius, Schutz, Eccard, Lassus and William Byrd.
Twenty voices of the Ebor Singers combine with the sackbuts, curtals, recorders, flutes and violin of The York Waits. Additional religious and secular instrumental items will afeature the Waits’ Noyse of Shawms, crumhorns, bagpipes and hurdy gurdy. Box office: ncem.ticketsolve.com.
Last chance to see: Christmas Through The Ages, Nunnington Hall, near Helmsley, today and tomorrow, 10.30am to 4pm; last entry at 3.15pm
NUNNINGTON Hall plays host to Christmases past on a Yuletide journey through the ages, immersed in the rich tapestry of festive traditions. Step into the opulence of the Georgian era, savour the splendour of the Victorian golden age, see a Tudor feast fit for a king, or relive the exuberant 1980s’ parties. Tomorrow, carol-singing sessions start at 12 noon and 2pm.
Younger visitors can discover a riddle trail in the garden and a new 1940s’ display in the West Bedroom details the story of a rationed Christmas. Slingsby Primary School has created a winter wonderland of 100 snowmen in the Oak Bedroom. Normal admission applies. Tickets: nationaltrust.org.uk/nunnington-hall.
Pears, but no partridge, for Christmas: Showtime With Don Pears At Christmas, Joseph Rowntree Theatre, York, tomorrow , 7pm
NOW a JoRo Christmas tradition, legendary York musician Don Pears performs an evening full of cheer in his Christmas Showtime Concert. Celebrating 30 years of making music and fundraising for the Haxby Road theatre, Pears will be joined by regular cohorts Arnold Durham, Graham and Richard Kay, John Hall, Steve Cassidy, Carol Richardson and Beth Winteringham.
York choir Singphonia make a guest appearance, along with The Tuesday Singers and York Ladies. Sweet Caroline, Memory and You Raise Me Up join multiple festive favourites on the set list. Meanwhile, Shepherd Group Brass Band’s 7.30pm concerts on December 22 and 23 have sold out. Box office: 01904 501395 or josephrowntreetheatre.co.uk.
Long-running festive fixture: York’s Annual Community Carol Concert, York Barbican, tomorrow (17/12/2023), 2pm
FOR 65 years, this concert has heralded York’s festive season with favourite Christmas carols and songs. Join Shepherd Group Youth Band, Badger Hill School Choir, Track 29 Ladies Harmony Chorus, York Stage School and Steve Cassidy for a Christmas singalong under the baton of musical director Mike Pratt.
Community Carol Concert favourites Adam Tomlinson and Rev Andrew Foster return as hosts. Proceeds go to the Lord Mayor and Sheriff of York’s Christmas Cheer Fund and The Press’s nominated charity. Box office: yorkbarbican.co.uk
Ho-ho homecoming for Christmas of the week: The Howl & The Hum, supported by Fiona Lee, tomorrow, Before Breakfast, Monday, and Bar Pandora, Tuesday, The Crescent, York. Doors: 7.30pm. Stage times: support acts, 8.15pm; headliners, 9.15pm
YORK’S supreme swoony rockers return to The Crescent for three festive shows with the original line-up of Sam Griffiths, vocals and guitar, Bradley Blackwell, bass, Conor Hirons, guitar, and Jack Williams, drums, who play together for the last time.
“The Howl & The Hum are a band who we grew up with; their shows here at The Crescent have always been special since our – and their – early days through to the way-pro Christmas gigs they’ve played here more recently,” says the website. “Cheers guys, look forward to what is next!”. Sold out, alas. For returns only: thecrescent.co.uk.
Dickens of a good idea for a Christmas folk concert: Green Matthews: A Christmas Carol In Concert, National Centre for Early Music, York, Tuesday, 7.30pm
CHRIS Green and Sophie Matthews are joined by Jude Rees for a retelling of Charles Dickens’s redemptive Christmas tale exclusively through song with voices and traditional and modern instruments in authentic musical arrangements.
Modern-day balladeers Green Matthews take this nocturnal festive adventure back to its Victorian fireside roots with a magical blend of new lyrics, midwinter English folk tunes and carol melodies to illustrate the transformation of flint-hearted Ebenezer Scrooge into the epitome of the Christmas spirit: warm hearted, generous and loving. Box office: 01904 658338 or ncem.co.uk.
Tribute show of the week: The Carpenters Story At Christmas, York Barbican, Tuesday, 7.30pm
IN this special festive show, Carpenters’ classics such as Top Of The World, Close To You and We’ve Only Just Begun are paired with festive selections from Richard and Karen Carpenter’s 1978 album Christmas Portrait, from Merry Christmas Darling to The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire). Box office: yorkbarbican.co.uk.
Recommended but sold out already: Jools Holland and His Rhythm & Blues Orchestra, York Barbican, Wednesday, 7.30pm
BOOGIE-WOOGIE piano maestro Jools Holland and his big band will be joined by special guests Pauline Black and Arthur ‘Gaps’ Hendrick, from The Selecter. “This magnificent addition will amplify our Ska music credentials and bring an extra razzy dazzy spasm to our dance capabilities,” reckons Jools.
Boogie queen and enchantress Ruby Turner and Louise Marshall will be singing too, as will Sumudu Jayatilaka, who joined Jools for the first time in 2022.