Dec. 15: Holiday Pops concert by The Gainesville Orchestra

EMMA Concert Association annual event features popular holiday tunes

St. Augustine, FL —  An EMMA Concert Association holiday tradition, The Gainesville Orchestra will perform favorite holiday music from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, December 15 in Lewis Auditorium at Flagler College, 14 Granada St., downtown St. Augustine.Tickets include free parking at the St. Johns County Council on Aging, with a complimentary trolley to and from the venue. This event is held during Nights of Lights, a perfect way to view some of the lights in downtown while on the shuttle. Tickets are available at

“We are excited to bring this annual holiday event to our community during the festive Nights of Lights,” said Joanne Everett, President of EMMA Board of Directors. “This is a family-friendly concert, and one that we believe ushers in the season beautifully.”

Based in Gainesville, Florida, The Gainesville orchestra is led by Maestro Evans Haile, who is celebrating 20 years as musical director and conductor. In 1983 a group of local musicians met to form the Gainesville Chamber Orchestra, and Raymond Chobaz was appointed as Music Director and Conductor. In the fall of 1983, a 34-member ensemble consisting of professional musicians, amateurs and gifted students performed their inaugural concert before a large audience. By 1984, the orchestra developed both an advisory board and a Board of Directors. For more than three decades the orchestra has been part of the cultural vitality of Alachua County and other areas of Florida. The orchestra possesses a history of collaboration with local businesses, organizations and arts groups in the presentation of events.

In 2001 the GCO secured the services of Maestro Evans Haile as Music Director and Conductor. Attracting this internationally known artist, whose home and history is in Gainesville, substantially enhanced the quality and reputation of the orchestra. For example, Leon Fleisher, world-renowned pianist and conductor, played and conducted at the first concert for 2006-2007 season. In 1989, GCO made a commitment to education by creating the Youth Concert Series, resulting in a Family Concert as part of the regular concert season with an additional special performance of this concert at the University of Florida’s Phillips Center for Performing Arts for the school children of Alachua County and surrounding counties.

Guests to this traditional holiday pops concert are invited to sing along to well-loved tunes! The program will include:  Strauss’ “Die Fledermaus” Overture; Disney’s “Aladdin”; selections from  Tchaikovsky’s “Nutcracker Suite,” Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Christmas Eve,” and exciting holiday music from around the world, along favorites like “Sleigh Ride,” “White Christmas” and many others, capping it off with a holiday sing along.

Pre-show entertainment includes an acrobat/juggler by a circus performer, sure to delight all ages. 

Advance ticket reservations are encouraged to this popular holiday event at


Holiday Pops with The Gainesville Orchestra

  • Wednesday, December 15, 2021 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m.
  • Lewis Auditorium at Flagler College, 14 Granada St, St. Augustine, FL 32084
  • Tickets: or 904-797-2800
  • Tickets are $55 per guest and include parking and a shuttle to and from the venue. Student and children’s tickets are $10. Parking will not be available at Lewis Auditorium at Flagler College for this concert. Parking will take place at the St. Johns County Council on Aging, 180 Marine St., St. Augustine FL 32084. Guests will then be transported to and from the concert venue by shuttle service. Masks are required in the venue.

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