Feeling the Spirit of Christmas with the Muppets and Santino Fontana
Smiles and surprises are always guaranteed at the annual Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square Christmas concert, and this year’s show was no exception. Special guests Santino Fontana and the Sesame Street Muppets™ lit up the stage with touching musical performances and comedy.
The concerts were held December 11–14 at the Conference Center of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City, Utah, and attracted excited audiences of all ages.
It was Fontana’ssecond time performing with the choir. The Frozen star made his first appearance with them in the 2014 Pioneer Day celebration. The Sesame Street Muppets™, who have entertained the world on television for over 45 years, were first-time guests. But they didn’t just perform; in fact, they got the show rolling.
Big Bird made his debut as a choir and orchestra conductor, Grover tried his fuzzy blue hand at directing, and Count von Count helped by doing what he does best—counting! You knew there were 12 days of Christmas, but did you know there are 7,708 individual pipes in the Conference Center organ? (He counted them before the show.)
In true Sesame Street style, the cast teamed up to learn a few sweet lessons. Ernie taught Bert to find confidence and “sing a song, sing out loud, sing out strong.” Fontana taught Cookie Monster that “cookie” isn’t the only thing that starts with C. So do “Christmas,” “choir,” and “concert.” Elmo taught Rosita, Abby Cadabby, and the audience that there is much more to Christmas than decorations and presents.
Along with the Sesame Street tunes and Christmas classics, the cast delivered spiritual messages that highlighted the true meaning of Christmas. Fontana recited the scriptural story of Jesus Christ’s birth, and the choir sang hymns in celebration of the Savior. Each of the musicians and performers shared His light as they brought the spirit of Christmas to the ears and hearts of all who were with them.
With such a successful show, we wonder how the choir and orchestra will ever top it. But we will leave that to them, and in the meantime, we won’t forget the lessons we learned of remembering Jesus Christ and following His example at Christmastime and always.
Click here to see a few outtakes from the 2014 Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas concert.