Music

Boston Pops perform holiday hits for patients at local hospitals

This year marked the Boston Pops’ first live performance in the hospitals since 2019.

Boston Pops string players performed holiday songs in the lobby of Boston Children's Hospital. Hilary Scott via BSO Press Office

The Boston Pops brought some holiday cheer to two local hospitals Tuesday. 

Conductor Keith Lockhart started the day at Boston Children’s Hospital, joined by Pops violinists Lucia Lin and Sophie Wang, violist Rebecca Gitter, and cellist Owen Young. Lockhart then conducted a second performance at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Boston, along with Takumi Taguchi and Sophie Wang on violin, Danny Kim on viola, and Will Chow on cello. 

Cellist Owen Young meets a young fan in Boston Children’s Hospital. Hilary Scott via BSO Press Office

The musicians put on a show for patients and their families, complete with festive gear and holiday tunes. The songs included “Jingle Bells” and selections from “The Nutcracker.”

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However, according to Pops publicist Matthew Erikson, there is a clear audience favorite — Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride,” originally composed for the Boston Pops in 1948.

Keith Lockhart serenades a young patient during “Sleigh Ride.” BSO Press Office

Holiday hospital performances have become an annual tradition for the Boston Pops. The musicians first performed at Boston Children’s in 2012, and at Spaulding the following year, Erikson said. This year’s performance marked the Boston Pops’ first live return to the two hospitals since 2019.

The Boston Pops are currently in the middle of their 49th annual Holiday Pops season. Lockhart and the orchestra are performing 39 concerts in 24 days at Symphony Hall, which include kid-friendly matinees. They are also making stops in Lowell and Manchester, New Hampshire.

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