Holiday Concerts & Shows in Lake County - Visit Lake County - Official Travel Site
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Holiday Concerts & Shows

Fill your soul with a holiday show or concert in Lake County, IL

"Giddy-yup, giddy-yup, giddy-yup, Let's Go to the show," Lake County!

There's no better way to soak up Lake County than witnessing a delightful holiday concert or show. 

Fill yourself up with holiday cheer and the festive spirit by attending one of these stupendous hot ticket items. "O Come All Ye Faithful" Lake Countians. 

"Oliver" at the Marriott Theatre (through December 22)

Based on Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens, “Consider Yourself” in attendance for the Marriott Theatre’s final show of the 2019 season. You may have to head over to Three Embers or Wright’s Bistro for some delectable “Food, Glorious Food,” but “I’d Do Anything” to be pals with the musical’s lead. Oliver is an orphan that works as an undertaker’s apprentice. The amiable child joins a gang of burglars led by Fagin to escape this dead-end job. The authorities pinch Oliver for a crime didn't commit, but Mr. Brownlow, the victim of the crime, takes our British buddy in. Watch one of the most notable productions during the holiday season as Oliver discovers what family really means.

"Annie" at the Citadel Theatre (through December 22)

"The sun'll come out. Tomorrow. Bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow there'll be sun." Our favorite little orphan Annie hits the stage throughout the holiday season on the Lake Forest center stage. The seven-time Tony Award-winning production follows our beloved little redhead who's in a facility run by mean Miss Hannigan. A rich gentleman by the name of Warbucks adopts Annie and helps her on her quest to meet her birth parents. In the world of Annie, see who's experiencing the "Hard Knock Life."

Canadian Pacific Holiday Train in Viking Park (December 2)

The train horn can be heard in the distance. That’s the sound of the Canadian Pacific Railway Holiday Train making its annual stop at Viking Park in Gurnee. This vastly illuminated 14-car train partners with local communities to raise food and funds for local food banks as well as raise awareness about hunger issues. The train will blare live holiday music, conduct a brief ceremony, and will pass out candy canes for the kids. The choo-choo features live performances from Meg Patrick, Tanika Charles and Kelly Prescott. 

"The Magic of the Nutcracker" at Genesee Theatre (December 6)

The Nutcracker is a staple of the holiday season, especially when it’s the night before Christmas Eve. The Genesee Theatre in Waukegan opens its curtain for the annual Dancecenter North ballet originally composed by Pytor Ilyich Tchaikovsky. This legendary story follows a group of family and friends gathered together for a Christmas celebration. Clara, the story’s protagonist, is given a Nutcracker gift from her godfather. When the children go to bed, Clara stays awake and finds herself in the middle of a battle between a slew of mice and toy soldiers – and thus, the magic ensues with the soldiers led by the Nutcracker himself. 

2019 Sanfilippo Christmas Concerts (December 6-8)

There's no such thing as the holidays without the sounds of the mighty Sanfilippo Wurlitzer. Organist and wizard with the ivory, Dave Wickerham tickles the keys to give onlookers a bit of the Christmas spirit. The Barrington facility will feature a concert three times December 6-8. The San Filippo House three-day event also is highlighted by tours, libations, dinner, brunch, organ demonstrations and so much more. 

CLC Holiday Choral Concert at the James Lumber Center (December 7)

For the holiday season, the College of Lake County Chorus performs on the main stage at the James Lumber Center. The score is highlighted by a mix of musical styles from classical to Broadway to pop and everything in between. 

"'Twas the Night Before Christmas" at Gorton Community Center (December 7)

"'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house. Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse; The stockings were hung by the chimney with care. In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there; The children were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads." See the age-old story live at the Gorton Community Center in Lake Forest that was created in 1823 by Clement Clarke Moore. 

Chris Isaak: 2019 Holiday Tour at Genesee Theatre (December 7)

This triple threat musician, movie and TV star is taking his ax  to the road for the holiday season. From blues to rockabilly, to ballads, Isaak is a superstar under the bright lights. View the two-time Grammy Award-nominated singer perform an unforgettable production at the Waukegan hall. 

Mark Schutlz's Christmas Tour

Contemporary Christian musician Mark Schultz makes a stop with his Christmas tour at the Village Church of Gurnee. The platinum-selling, Kansas native has provided stellar tunes for almost two decades. Schultz is a three-time Dove Award-nominee taking home hardware for the "Long Form Music Video of the Year" award in 2005.

Saturday, December 7; 6-10 p.m. Tickets: $17-$35. Village Church of Gurnee, 1319 N. Hunt Club Rd., Gurnee.

"It's a Wonderful Life - A Radio Play" at the Improv Playhouse (December 7-21)


“Remember, no man is a failure who has friends.” The Improv Playhouse presents “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play,” adapted by Joe Landry this weekend. The Libertyville performance center’s holiday tradition stages their interpretation of the Frank Capra holiday classic. The play, performed in the fashion of a 1940s radio show features the tale of George Bailey. The show’s protagonist puts his big dreams on hold to take over his father’s business who abruptly passes away. Bailey faces many adversities during his endeavors that essentially saves the town of Bedford Falls during the Great Depression. With Bailey down on his luck, frustrated with life and questioning his own existence a guardian angel named Clarence tries to steer him away from suicide. The show runs on weekends through December 21.

CLC Wind Ensemble Holiday Concert at the James Lumber Center (December 8)

Conductor Michael Flack leads the College of Lake County Wind Ensemble for their holiday concert. The school of songsters will provide a mixed program of classical and contemporary tunes. 

Illinois Brass Band Holiday Concert at RLBCCC (December 8)

The Illinois Brass Band returns to the Round Lake Beach Cultural and Civic Center for an afternoon of glorious brass music. Thirty of the area’s finest brass players fill the air with the sounds of "the most wonderful time of the year." With a lively mix of traditional carols, holiday classics and jazzy updates of Christmas favorites, the performance will be an afternoon that will put the entire family in the holiday spirit.

CLC Concert Band Holiday Concert (December 11)

The Grayslake band will perform the sounds of the season and give you reasons to clap and dance in your seats.

CenterStage Presents "It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play" at Gorton Community Center (December 12-14)

“Remember, no man is a failure who has friends.” The Gorton Community Center presents “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play,” adapted by Joe Landry this weekend. CenterStage performs their rendition of the Frank Capra holiday classic. The Lake Forest play, performed in the fashion of a 1940s radio show features the tale of George Bailey. The show’s protagonist puts his big dreams on hold to take over his father’s business who abruptly passes away. Bailey faces many adversities during his endeavors that essentially saves the town of Bedford Falls during the Great Depression. With Bailey down on his luck, frustrated with life and questioning his own existence a guardian angel named Clarence tries to steer him away from suicide.

Quentin Road Christmas Musical in Lake Zurich (December 12-15)

Take an extraordinary journey with Quentin Road Baptist Church this Christmas as the secrets from Christmas Past are unlocked. With a 300-voice children-and-adult choir, dramatic lighting and live animals (including an 8-foot camel), see what happened on that first Christmas night long ago. Add this into your annual holiday tradition and relive the classic year after year. 

Navy Band Great Lakes Holiday Concert at Naval Station Great Lakes (December 13)

The United States Navy Band will provide holiday music lovers with their “Sounds of the Season” concert at the Ross Theater. The big man in the red suit even stops by to show off his chops on the ax. The concert is free, and Naval Station Great Lakes encourages audiences to don seasonal attire.

Cimorelli & Voiceplay: A Night of Holiday, Acapella and Hits at Genesee Theatre (December 13)

Six siblings, six voices, over six hundred million YouTube views (1.1 billion to be exact), these Cimorelli sisters are reaping the benefits of their family bond. The Cimorelli's YouTube success has earned them Teen Choice Award nominations, cinematic appearances like the movie "Hope Spring Eternal" and a Choice Web Star Award. Listen to them ring in the holiday with a night of seasonal tunes and their hits alongside Voiceplay, an internationally-acclaimed acapella group. 

"The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" at PM&L Theatre (December 13-22)

The bestest of the best pageant is coming to a theatre near you. The Antioch stage presents a hilarious holiday program based on the captivating young-adult book of the same title. The Herdman offspring are a riot. They are the most inventively awful kids in history. There's mayhem, there's holiday carol and of course, knee-slapping laughs in this holiday staple. The show runs on weekends through December 22.

Waukegan Symphony Orchestra presents Do It Yourself Messiah and Carol Sing Along (December 14)

The Waukegan Symphony Orchestra performs a classical holiday concert at the city's First United Methodist Church. The program is highlighted by Mozart's "Three German Dances," Vaughn Williams' "Fantasia on 'Greensleeves,'" Handel's "MESSIAH Part I, and the 'Hallelujah' Chorus" and Finnegan's "Christmas Sing-Along."

https://www.visitlakecounty.org/EventDetails?EventID=25183

Charlie Brown Christmas Jazz with the Chris White Trio at Gorton Community Center (December 14)

"Christmas time is here. Happiness and cheer. Fun for all that children call, their favorite time of year." It's become somewhat of an annual tradition for the three jazzists to play the tunes of the great Vince Guaraldi. Guaraldi wrote the original score when the "Peanuts" special aired in 1965. White is an instructor of jazz piano at Lake Forest College, North Park University in Chicago and North Central College in Naperville. A bassist and drummer join for an exceptional holiday concert.

Ruth's Page Civic Ballet's "The Nutcracker" at the James Lumber Center (December 14)

Plié and Pirouette into the holiday season with the beloved Ruth Page Civic Ballet's rendition of "The Nutcracker" at the James Lumber Center. Originally performed at the Arie Crown Theatre in Chicago from 1965 until 1997, this production recreates Ruth Page’s beautiful, full-length staging. Experience the exquisite dancing, stunning costumes and magical settings in the "Land of Snow" and the "Kingdom of the Sweets" like never before on the Grayslake stage.

A Chicago Chorale Christmas at Ravinia Festival (December 14)

The professional 60-voice ensemble of singers celebrates its 19th anniversary as a group traveling to Ravinia Festival for a unique holiday performance. The Chicago Chorale Christmas will provide audiences with a beautiful program of holiday tunes including "Ave Maria," "Lo, How A Rose E'er Blooming"  "The 12 Days of Christmas" and more. This Windy City singing crew is the epitome of artistic excellence and highly-rated by Chicago-area music critics. 

Perform-a-thon Holiday Concert and Open House at David Adler Music and Arts Center (December 14)

Strum, hum and fiddle on your way to the David Adler Music and Arts Center’s inaugural Making Spirits Bright Perform-a-thon this Saturday. The day-long marathon recital showcases David Adler music students raising money for the student scholarship fund. The Libertyville event is highlighted by an ornament-making workshop from 2-4 p.m., a maker’s market and talented student performances. Sing along at this merry affair while sipping delicious hot chocolate.

Ballet Makkai Presents "The Nutcracker" at the Gorton Community Center (December 14-15)

The Nutcracker is a staple of the holiday season, especially when it’s the night before Christmas Eve. Ballet Makkai opens its curtain for their interpretation of the ballet originally composed by Pytor Ilyich Tchaikovsky. This legendary story follows a group of family and friends gathered together for a Christmas celebration. Clara, the story’s protagonist, is given a Nutcracker gift from her godfather. When the children go to bed, Clara stays awake and finds herself in the middle of a battle between a slew of mice and toy soldiers – and thus, the magic ensues with the soldiers led by the Nutcracker himself. 

"Swinging on a Star" a Salute to Bing Crosby and the Andrews Sisters at Marriott Theatre (December 17)

Take a sentimental journey with Broadway’s Jared Bradshaw, who was also featured in “Jersey Boys” and “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” Hits of this Michael Ingersoll Artist Lounge Live show includes “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive,” “When Irish Eyes are Smiling” and “White Christmas.”

"The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Musical" at the Genesee Theatre (December 20)

The beloved Christmas tradition that continues to capture the hearts of children and their families everywhere comes to the live stage for the first time ever! "The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Musical" is a brand-new production based on the popular holiday character. This delightful musical offers an exclusive invitation to Santa's North Pole and engages audiences with a glimpse into the magical lives of Scout Elves. The Waukegan presentation will dazzle audiences of all ages. 


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Holidays in Lake County