Behind the Scenes of 53rd LA County Arts Holiday Celebration

I was invited to attend a rehearsal for the 53rd Annual LA County Holiday Celebration, presented at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion on Christmas Eve. 

Basically, twenty groups performing  each get twenty minutes to fine tune everything involved, with Executive Producer Laura Zucker and Producer Adam Davis there to ensure they give the best performances for all the audiences, live, broadcast or on the radio!

The LA County staff works together and with each artist to create a top notch show from beginning to end. The behind the scenes of this massive undertaking intrigued me, and here is a selection of photos to bring you through the day. For more images, see our tweets as the long day unfolded.

Stage Managers time each Choir, Orchestra or Troupe & track their songs/dances to synchronize the design elements like lights, scenic & more!


The main purpose of the rehearsal day is to align all the technical, design and other artistic elements. To that end, 15-20 LA County Staff as well as the Broadcast Crew pay strict attention to the performances, trouble-shooting and taking notes for a smooth and creative audience experience.

Producers & Director confer before, during & after each presentation.


Pacifico Dance Company packed a lot of story into a few minutes of song & dance.

“O Holy Night” – the point at which my jaw dropped. Mariachi Sol de Mexico de Jose Hernandez.

Las Cafeteras rocked the house with their spirited music & dance.


There was no shortage of choirs, with a variety beyond anything I’d ever heard in an 8-hour time-frame.  The challenge, as Laura  Zucker aptly put it: “What we want to do, is we want to tear the house down in less than five minutes.”

If you’ve never attended the LA County Holiday Celebration, people arrive early on the 24th to get their favorite spots. It’s free and looks like an amazing program. I was impressed and honored that they & Lucy Pollack invited me inside of their process, and hope more arts organization consider this idea. Through the tweets, Facebook, instagram, tumblr and Google+ updates throughout the day, people who had no idea this event happens got interested through my eyes, and a dialogue with some artists began with the audience. If you can’t see it, watch/listen to the event live and let me know what you thought in the comments or with #HCLA on twitter.  
Left, The Spirit Chorale of Los Angeles
Below Left, South Bay Children’s Choir

Below Right, the unsung heroes: parents of the children in the choirs. Zucker & Staff were sure to show their appreciation to everyone in the room.


LA County Holiday Celebration

MONDAY, DECEMBER 24, 2012 | 3:00-6:00 PM

A medley of seasonal music and dance is on display at this year’s L.A. County Holiday Celebration! Bands, choirs and dance companies representing the diverse cultures and holiday traditions of L.A. will take the stage at this FREE three-hour extravaganza – even the parking is free!

Monday, December 24 from 3pm – 6pm

Dorothy Chandler Pavilion - 135 N. Grand Ave.
Pre-show activities begin at Noon
Doors open at 2:30 pm
No reservations or tickets are necessary.
Free parking or take the Metro!

Can’t make it? No problem!
The show is broadcast live on KCET and
or listen live at 90.7 KPFK.
KCET broadcast repeats: December 24 @ 8 pm; December 25 @ Noon and 3pm.

Filed Under: cindy marie jenkinsFeatured


Cindy Marie Jenkins About the Author: CINDY MARIE JENKINS is a Storyteller & Outreach Nerd based in Los Angeles. Currently Communications Director for 24th STreet Theatre, She is Host & Executive Producer of The Lemon Lounge, a new talk show to connect audiences with the arts. Cindy was one of the arts advocates who created the #LAthtr hashtag in 2010 to unify the Los Angeles theatre scene.

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