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Osmo Vänskä /// Music Director

Press Room: Press Releases

Minnesota Orchestra presents new holiday program featuring stories by Kevin Kling and stage direction by Peter Rothstein


Ensemble of Minnesota singer-actors joins the Minnesota Orchestra onstage for an all-new holiday program, conducted by Sarah Hicks

Concerts feature original music for the Minnesota Orchestra, written by Robert Elhai

The Minnesota Orchestra presents the world premiere of an all-new holiday program with two performances of Home for the Holidays on Thursday, December 21, at Orchestra Hall. The 75-minute full-Orchestra concert, deeply rooted in Minnesota holiday traditions, features an ensemble of talented local singer-actors including Twin Cities writer-storyteller Kevin Kling, whose original stories and adaptations form the narrative of the entire program. This new production, combining classical music, theater and storytelling, was conceived and directed by Peter Rothstein, the Founding Artistic Director of Theater Latté Da. Creatively integrated into the theatrical landscape, the Minnesota Orchestra plays original music by Robert Elhai, plus favorite holiday classics and sing-alongs, and a special performance of Heart of the Heartland with Emmy-winning composer and mandolin player Peter Ostroushko.

“We’ve assembled some of the State’s most cherished artists to create a unique celebration of story, song and nostalgia,” says stage director Peter Rothstein. “I’m thrilled to be collaborating with the Minnesota Orchestra on this new holiday show.”

Concerts are performed at the Orchestra’s home venue in downtown Minneapolis, Orchestra Hall, on Thursday, December 21, 2017, at 11 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., with ticket prices ranging from $30 to $75. More information is available at and by phone at 612-371-5656.  For further purchasing details, refer to the information section at the conclusion of this press release.

Sarah Hicks, conductor
Sarah Hicks, the Minnesota Orchestra’s principal conductor of Live at Orchestra Hall, has led a broad range of programs since joining the Orchestra as assistant conductor in 2006. During the 2017-18 season, she conducts Orchestra performances with Rufus Wainwright, Ben Folds, Pink Martini, Cloud Cult and Cirque de la Symphonie, as well as film music concerts including La La Land, Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Little Mermaid and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. More:

Kevin Kling, writer
Monologist and playwright Kevin Kling has been awarded fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the McKnight Foundation, the Minnesota State Arts Board, the Bush Foundation, the Jerome Foundation and other organizations. His plays have been produced by major theaters in the Twin Cities, including the Guthrie and the Jungle Theater, and around the country. A frequent commentator for NPR and MPR’s All Things Considered, Kling was named the Minneapolis Story Laureate by then-Mayor R.T. Rybak in 2014. More:

Peter Rothstein, stage director
Peter Rothstein is the Founding Artistic Director of Theater Latté Da, where he has staged 57 productions, including nine world premieres. His other recent collaborations include productions with the Guthrie Theater, Children’s Theatre Company, Minnesota Opera, Ten Thousand Things, Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theatre and the Utah Shakespeare Festival. He is the creator of All Is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914. Rothstein has received nine Ivey Awards for overall excellence, and he was named the 2015 Minnesota Artist of the Year by the Star Tribune. More:

Robert Elhai, composer and arranger
Robert Elhai has written music for productions at Fortune’s Fool Theatre, Nautilus Music-Theater and Theater Latté Da. He also arranged music for The New Standards’ performance with the Minnesota Orchestra in July 2016. He is the recipient of Tony and Drama Desk nominations for best orchestrations for the Broadway production of The Lion King, and has contributed orchestrations to some 150 movies, including The Sixth Sense, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, and five films from The Fast and the Furious series. More:

Peter Ostroushko, composer and mandolin
Mandolinist, composer, arranger and teacher Peter Ostroushko grew up listening to tunes played at family get-togethers in the Ukrainian community of northeast Minneapolis. It’s the music that provides the basis for many of his compositions. His works have been performed by the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and the Kremlin Chamber Orchestra, among others, and his music has been featured on public television specials such as Ken Burns’ film The National Parks and Minnesota: A History of the Land, for which Ostroushko won an Emmy.

Minnesota Orchestra Holiday Concerts

Thursday, December 21, 2017, 11 a.m. (Coffee Concert) and 7:30 p.m. / Orchestra Hall

Minnesota Orchestra
Sarah Hicks
, conductor
Peter Rothstein, stage director
Kevin Kling, writer and ensemble
Robert Elhai, composer and arranger
Peter Ostroushko, composer and mandolin
Jim Lichtscheidl, movement director
Alice Fredrickson, costume designer
Christina Baldwin, ensemble
Dieter Bierbrauer, ensemble
Thomasina Petrus, ensemble
Alejandro Vega, ensemble

Tickets: $30 to $75


Individual tickets and subscription packages can be purchased online at, or by calling 612-371-5656 (612-371-5642 for subscriptions) or 800-292-4141. Tickets can be purchased in person at the Orchestra Hall Box Office, 1111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis (Stage Door ticketing is open Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Lobby Box Office ticketing begins two hours before all ticketed performances); and at the skyway accessible Minnesota Orchestra Administrative Office, International Centre, 5th floor, 920 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis (open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). For more information, call 612-371-5656, or visit For subscriptions, call 612-371-5642 or visit For groups of 10 or more, call 612-371-5662. 

All programs, artists, dates, times and prices subject to change. 

The Star Tribune is the Minnesota Orchestra’s media partner for the 2017-18 season.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.



Gwen Pappas, Director of Public Relations 
(612) 371-5628 • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Emma Plehal, Public Relations Writer and Coordinator
(612) 371-5625 • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Press Contacts

Gwen Pappas

Director of Communications
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Carl Schroeder

Publications Editor
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Emma Plehal

Communications Manager and Assistant Editor
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Isaac Risseeuw

Social Media and Content Coordinator
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Communications Office

Minnesota Orchestra
1111 Nicollet Mall
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55403
Phone: 612.371.5600
Fax: 612.371.7170

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