Holiday Concerts and Performances to Enjoy in NJ This Season

A guide to what's gracing Garden State stages through December.

Productions of The Nutcracker are taking place all over the Garden State this holiday season. Courtesy of VAM Productions

The holiday season is here—and so is a full calendar of fun and festive performances.

Fans can enjoy concerts from acts like Glee star Jane Lynch and “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” songstress Darlene Love, while patrons of all ages will have a blast at live takes on timeless characters such as Charlie Brown and Rudolph. And it wouldn’t be the holidays without The Nutcracker, which is being put on all over the state.

A Charlie Brown Christmas: Live on Stage

November 28 (5 pm)

Classic Peanuts characters come to life in this adaptation of the timeless TV special. Join the gang as they put on their own Christmas play and discover the true meaning of the season—all set to a jazz score from pianist Vince Guaraldi.
Mayo Performing Arts Center, Morristown; $29–$69; 973-539-8008.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical

November 29–30 (7:30 pm nightly)

The lovable character comes to the stage with holiday music that’ll get anyone in the seasonal spirit.
State Theatre New Jersey, New Brunswick; $29–$59; 732-246-7469.

Nefesh Mountain

December 2 (7:30 pm)

Five-piece bluegrass band Nefesh Mountain, led by Monclair couple Doni Zasloff and Eric Lindberg, present a Hanukkah concert complete with original tunes, classic bluegrass songs and a selection of Woody Guthrie’s rarely performed Hanukkah jams. Presented by SOPAC as the mainstage theatre undergoes renovations following damage from Hurricane Ida.
Temple Sharey Tefilo Israel, South Orange; $23–$33.

The Nutcracker

(Various dates and times)

The New Jersey Ballet celebrates 50 years of presenting the holiday classic. This year, it stops at Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood (December 4–5), Levoy Theatre in Millville (December 12) and Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown, with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra (December 17–24 & 26). Other NJ productions include American Repertory Ballet (December 3 & 5 at Union County Performing Arts Center; December 10–11 at Patriots Theater at the War Memorial; December 17–19 at State Theatre New Jersey), Atlantic City Ballet (December 10–11 at Stockton Performing Arts Center; December 18 at Strand Theater; December 19 at Circus Maximus Theater at Caesars), and Hip Hop Nutcracker (December 18 at NJPAC).

Jane Lynch: A Swingin’ Little Christmas

December 9 (7:30 pm)

The Glee star brings a whole lot of fun to the holidays with a show that’s part concert, part cabaret, and part comedy.
NJPAC, Newark; $69; 888-696-5722.

Together We Celebrate Winter Holidays

December 12 (3 pm)

The New Jersey Youth Symphony presents holiday scores highlighting Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa and more winter celebrations.
Union County Performing Arts Center, Rahway; $15–$20; 732-499-8226.

Darlene Love

December 15 (7:30 pm) & 22 (8 pm)

What’s Christmas without Darlene Love and her tune “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)”? See Love perform on December 15 at Red Bank’s Hackensack Meridian Health Theatre at Count Basie Center (7:30 pm; $39–$129; 732-842-9000) and on December 22 at Englewood’s Bergen Performing Arts Center (8 pm; $29–$69; 201-227-1030).

Trans-Siberian Orchestra

December 22 (3 & 8 pm)

The world-famous progressive-Rock group rocks out to a Christmas Eve tale with a hair-raising music-and-light show.
Prudential Center, Newark; $44–$84; 973-757-6000

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