- Kevin Nixon
This one goes out to those who wake up on the first of November and immediately turn on the Santa-themed music, start pulling out the festive sweaters and are actually delighted to see stores stocking up on Christmas decorations. While many folks wish ill upon this kind of person, this round-up of early holiday events is made just for them; may your eager and merry spirit rub off on the rest of us. Read below to find out all the places you can go to get your happy holidays on ahead of the crowd.
Cirque Musica Holiday Spectacular: Split the difference on interests with a friend or family member, and go to this event with the one who's a big Cirque du Soleil fan. The event fuses circus performance with symphony grandeur, all tied together in a present-perfect bow by the holiday theme. The world-renowned company provides all types of circus drama set to all types of music and themes, and this Cirque Musica Holiday Spectacular is brand new on the lineup of experiences they offer to audiences. Don't miss the chance to see the holidays blown up to an extreme that only circus clowns, swinging acrobats and an orchestra can affect. Delta Performance Hall at the Eccles, 131 S. Main St., Sunday, Nov. 21, 6:30 p.m., $44.50 - $189.50, live-at-the-eccles.com
Trans-Siberian Orchestra Celebrating 25 Years of Christmas Eve: While we are far from Christmas Eve, that obviously doesn't stop the zealous Christmas-lover from getting stoked—and it doesn't stop the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, either. The rock-infused ensemble fuses traditional sweeping composition with equally soaring rock 'n roll guitars and synths. You've probably heard their instrumental take on "Carol of the Bells," "Christmas Eve / Sarajevo 12/24" more than once, and for good reason—it's pretty epic as far as traditional Christmas songs go. The group will be celebrating 25 years of making totally hardcore holiday music this year—and their four hour show in SLC is sure to be unmissable. Vivint Arena, 301 S. Temple, Wednesday, Nov. 24, 3:30 p.m., $47 - $203, ticketmaster.com
Gentri: Finding Christmas: Is it the holidays, or is it Gentri season? Either way, we're celebrating early. That's because no one does the holidays right like The Gentlemen Trio. The trio of tenors dominate the stages this time of year, peddling their popular lineup of holiday classics. This time around, they're presenting a new show in their Finding Christmas special, just after the release of their new album Season of Light, which comes out on Friday, Nov. 12. Upon this writing, the trio is in the process of a "Twelve Days of Christmas"-themed sneak preview of their songs, and on the "first day of Christmas" Gentri gave to fans a peek at their version of "Angels We Have Heard on High." Don't miss the return of both the holidays, and perhaps more importantly, Gentri. Delta Performance Hall at the Eccles, 131 S. Main St., Friday, Nov. 26 - Saturday, Nov. 27, 8 p.m., $20 - $120, live-at-the-eccles.com
Lark & Spur Christmas Concert. While the Utah band Lark & Spur has maintained a name for themselves of general quality and entertainment over the years, playing their mix of jazz, folk and classical tunes for both locals and folks abroad, they've also got a particular stake in the holidays. In 2005, the ensemble (made up at its core of the duo Jeff Whitely and Lori Decker) featured in the first Excellence in the Community event, a Christmas concert performed at Westminster College. Since then, Excellence in the Community concerts—which is Whitely's project—have become an institutional, valuable tradition in Downtown SLC nightlife, and are now at Christmastime about to cross the threshold of 1,000 concerts performed—even through the pandemic, they kept up a robust live stream schedule. Lark & Spur not only share Whitely with Excellence, but have been there the whole time, so as Excellence rings in their milestone, Lark & Spur will sound the celebration bells with their traditional Christmas Concert—the timing feels like a Christmas miracle. Grand Theatre, 1575 S. State St., Saturday, Nov. 27, 7:30 p.m., free, grandtheatrecompany.com
Joshua Creek and Ryan Shupe Christmases: A double-local feature here coming at you from the Covey Center for the Arts. Both the band Joshua Creek and Ryan Shupe & the RubberBand bring forth classic, good-old-American rock 'n roll predispositions, which also makes both groups super qualified to take on the holiday classics. This will be Joshua Creek's 13th time playing their annual Christmas show, and on top of playing some songs, the group will share stories and memories of Christmas seasons of the past. If the big flashy displays in arenas aren't how you celebrate, and you want something more intimate with people you know next to you in the rows, head down to Provo for these early weekday shows. Say goodbye to November and hello to the month that most people will start celebrating with you, and do it with the warm songs of these local folks. Covey Center for the Arts, 425 W. Center St., Provo, Monday, Nov. 29 (Joshua Creek), 7:30 p.m., $20; Tuesday, Nov. 30 (Ryan Shupe & the RubberBand) 7:30 p.m., $15 - $22, provo.org