Dame Judi Dench, Jamie Cullum, and Gregory Porter will headline this year’s Christmas season at the Royal Albert Hall, with special guests including Sandi Toksvig and Anna Lapwood.
They join a packed Christmas calendar at the 152-year old venue, with more than 30 events across the month taking in everything from gospel and soul to sing-along carols, drag, jazz, classical music, and films.
Matthew Todd, Director of Programming at the Royal Albert Hall, said: “People have been coming together for Christmas at the Hall for more than 150 years, and we’re excited to present our biggest and most eclectic season yet – with a truly glittering array of stars and something for everyone. We’re really excited to welcome new artists and concerts, including the first-ever European performance of Gospel Messiah – with Marin Alsop fresh from conducting the Last Night of the Proms 2023.”
Announced today, Christmas with Judi Dench and Gyles Brandreth will feature a star-studded cast of guests and seasonal party pieces from Dame Judi and Gyles, as well as an exploration of the legendary actor’s extraordinary life and times.
Conductor Marin Alsop will present the European Premiere of Gospel Messiah, a new concert re-imagining Handel’s perennial Christmas favourite, featuring South African tenor Zwakele Tshabalala and British soul singer Vanessa Haynes alongside the London Adventist Chorale and BBC Symphony Chorus.
A Christmas Gaiety – the Hall’s queer festive extravaganza – returns with a new lineup including Sandi Toksvig, organist Anna Lapwood, West End star Kerry Ellis, Father Jay Jay Revlon and members of the UK House of Revlon, drag queens Sister Roma, Peaches Christ, Baga Chipz, Le Gateau Chocolat, and the BBC Concert Orchestra conducted by Edwin Outwater.
Trevor Nelson will once again curate a night of Christmas soul and RnB with the BBC Concert Orchestra, with special guests including Lemar, Chic’s Kimberly Davis, and the Kingdom Choir. Previous guests have included Corinne Bailey Rae, Emeli Sandé, Laura Mvula, Omar, Kimberly Davis and the Kingdom Choir.
The season features three jazz concerts: Jamie Cullum will present a seasonal programme including songs from his album The Pianoman at Christmas, Gregory Porter makes his first appearance as part of the Hall’s Christmas season, and Guy Barker’s Big Band Christmas returns for an eighth year with guests including Clare Teal, Tommy Blaize, Vanessa Haynes, Joe Stilgoe, Giacomo Smith and Flight Call.
The London Community Gospel Choir and special guests will present another evening of uplifting festive music, fresh from their appearances on Britain’s Got Talent and with Elton John at Glastonbury Festival 2023.
Films in Concert will also feature in the programme, with screenings of classic holiday films accompanied by full orchestra. These include the UK premiere of Elf™ in Concert, with the Philharmonia Orchestra, and the return of Home Alone in Concert – performed by the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra and the Crouch End Festival Chorus.
Alastair Campbell and Rory Stewart return for a second end-of-year roundup of The Rest is Politics LIVE, following a sold-out appearance in 2022.
And traditional concerts will complete the season, with the Hall’s longest-running festive concert, Christmas with the Royal Choral Society, as well as 15 performances of the venue’s annual sing-along carols. This year’s special guests include soloists Jennifer France, Zara McFarlane and Cleopatra Rey, and presenters Jess Gillam and Greg Beardsell.
Tickets available now from www.royalalberthall.com
ELF and all related characters and elements © & ™ New Line Productions, Inc. (s23)
Royal Albert Hall
London SW7 2AP
www.royalalberthall.com / 020 7589 8212
Home Alone in Concert
Sat 2 Dec, 7:30PM & Sun 3 Dec, 10:30AM
Tickets from £25.50
Thu 7 Dec, 7:30PM
Tickets from £30
Jamie Cullum: The Pianoman at Christmas
Fri 8 Dec, 7:30PM
Elf™ in Concert
Sat 9 Dec, 2:30PM & 7:30PM
Tickets from £25.50
My Christmas Orchestral Adventure
Sun 10 Dec, 12:30PM & 4:30PM
Tickets from £22.50
Christmas with the Royal Choral Society
Mon 11 Dec, 7:30PM
Tickets from £35
A Christmas Gaiety
Tue 12 Dec, 7:30PM
Tickets from £20
Gregory Porter in Concert
Wed 13 Dec, 7:30PM
Tickets from £55
The Rest is Politics LIVE
Thu 14 Dec, 7:30PM
Christmas with Judi Dench and Gyles Brandreth
Fri 15 Dec, 7:30PM
Tickets from £40
Trevor Nelson’s Soul Christmas
Mon 18 Dec, 7:30PM
Tickets from £35
London Community Gospel Choir at Christmas
Tue 19 Dec, 7:30PM
Tickets from £25
Guy Barker’s Big Band Christmas
Wed 20 Dec, 7:30PM
Tickets from £27.50
Carols at the Royal Albert Hall
Sat 16 Dec – Sun 24 Dec
Tickets from £18.50